The business financing climate is getting sunnier with new lending models.
Growth
It’s no secret that running a restaurant is a risky business. The fact that many restaurants will ultimately fail early in their existence is not lost on most entrepreneurs, and yet they carry on anyway in hopes that their restaurant dreams can be made true.   The risk inherent to opening a...
Promotions
In 2007, Togo’s, a 242-unit, 40-year-old West Coast sandwich chain, was purchased by San Francisco equity firm Mainsail Partners, which quickly saw a problem. “Throughout the system there were six logos on the exterior signage,” says Renae Scott, vice president of branding and marketing for Togo’s...
Denise Lee Yohn sets certain standards brands must meet for social media.
Denise Lee Yohn: QSR’s Marketing Guru
As a child I was a geek who desperately wanted to be popular. In my quest to be cool, I wanted to copy the popular kids’ rebellious behaviors like dying my hair and going coatless in the dead of winter. When I expressed these aspirations to my mother, she admonished me by saying, “Just because...
Read Full Story // read more about: Marketing, Promotions
Businesses can thrive by planning strategically for the future.
Growth
After running nuclear reactors for submarines, Loren Goodridge was ready to be his own boss. Navy alum Goodridge became a Subway franchisee in 1992, and has since been recognized for his strategic planning skills by Subway CEO Fred DeLuca and grown his franchise company to 20 units. Armed with...
Read Full Story // read more about: Subway, Franchising
Energy Kitchen offers healthy dishes like bison and ostrich burgers.
Emerging Concepts
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To encourage return visits, a fast-casual restaurant that serves only healthy food must make taste paramount, says Anthony Leone, founder of Energy Kitchen. That’s why at Energy Kitchen, the menu includes nontraditional ingredients like bison and ostrich. “We work very hard on recipes,” Leone says...
Executives must identify and work on strengthening their weaknesses.
Human Resources
Chris Newcomb, cofounder, president, and CEO of Newk’s Express Café, would have called himself an understanding manager. His two co-owners, however, would have described it differently—something along the lines of too forgiving. “They came to me and said, ‘You sure do give people a lot of chances...
Read Full Story // read more about: Popeyes, Newk's Eatery
Fine dining foods are finding their way to quick-service menus.
Marc Halperin: Resident F&B Expert
In 2015, the single most popular dish on quick-serve restaurant menus will be a sumptuous curried goat sandwich served with fried lentils and a crispy tamarind-orange flatbread. Shortly thereafter, thick, frosty duck confit milkshakes and turnip tots will take the fast food world by storm. Then, by...
Americans deserve engagement instead of advertisement overload.
Outside Insights
How many advertising messages is the average American exposed to every day? When you consider almost every surface we see during the course of our day is invariably plastered with advertising, the numbers are high. From newspapers, magazines, billboards, and product logos, the acceleration of...
The top quick service restaurant brands from year 2014 served new menu items, technology, innovation.
2014’s Top Brand Stories
It’s that time of year. Time to look back and reflect upon the brand developments in quick service from the past year—from the surprising to the exciting and the defining—that seemed most important. Innovation and growth are a couple of the common themes among the top fast-food brand stories of...
Ideas and insights from 17 years of top quick service industry publication QSR magazine.
200 Ideas for 200 Issues
The quick-service restaurant industry is always changing, and for 17 years and 200 issues, QSR has been there to write it into the history books. As the leading source of news and information for the industry, we’ve watched trends come and go, brands rise to prominence while others fade away, and...
Quick service restaurant icon KFC is improving menu options while focusing on consistency.
All Access: KFC
Images of the late Col. Harlan Sanders are everywhere as you walk through the Louisville, Kentucky, headquarters of KFC and its parent, Yum! Brands. Not only are there plenty of photos and videos of the company founder and creator of the world’s most popular fried chicken recipe, but there are also...
Quick service restaurant executives run charity effort to raise funds for cancer research.
A Personal Connection
When Lori Newcomb found out she had stage III ovarian cancer last year, she made it her mission to learn more about the disease and help other women fighting the same battle. She sat down with her husband, Chris Newcomb, cofounder and CEO of Southern quick-service chain Newk’s Eatery, and together...
Quick service brands make impact on restaurant industry with big news events.
2014’s Top 9 Stories
It’s fair to say that 2014 has been as eventful a year for quick-service restaurants as the industry has seen in quite a while. Changing demographics and sharper competition have sparked a variety of innovations, but also exposed some weaknesses. And the unrelenting march of technology is changing...
Quick service operators offer alcoholic beverages to eliminate customer veto vote.
No Hangover in Sight
When news that more quick-serve and fast-casual restaurants were experimenting with alcohol beverage service emerged in the last decade, many operators and experts followed it with a skepticism chaser. Analysts warned that costly liquor licensing, regulatory details, and staffing issues were just a...
Fast food kitchens must protect restaurants against food borne illness.
How to Improve Your Food Safety
Stories surrounding food-borne illness outbreaks in national quick-service restaurant chains have become very common, with many national brands having suffered at least one major food-borne illness outbreak. Whether the cause of the outbreak is due to contaminated food or unclean surfaces, food...