Boston Market CEO interacts at store level with his fast casual customers.
Executive Insights
When George Michel took the chief executive reins at Boston Market in October 2010, he inherited a concept with a tumultuous 25-year history that included bankruptcy, a headline-grabbing purchase—and subsequent sale—by McDonald’s, uneven numbers, and fading consumer interest. In no time, though,...
Industry News
McAlister’s Deli is celebrating summer with new limited-time promotions, including BBQ pulled pork, refreshing dessert shooters, and a new twist on McAlister’s Famous Sweet Tea. Available July 8 through September 29, the new menu items include:   BBQ Pulled Pork Items: Sandwich – Pulled pork, BBQ...
Ads focused on value instead of price drive purchase decisions at restaurants.
Promotions
Could the dollar menu soon be a thing of the past? It’s possible, according to findings from market research firm Phoenix Marketing International. A new study from the firm finds that customers don’t mind paying higher prices at restaurants as long as there’s a perceived value in the item or...
Taco Bell's strong culture helps improve the guest experience.
Denise Lee Yohn: QSR’s Marketing Guru
Q: Why is having a clear purpose and principles important to brand building? A: A debate I frequently have with restaurant executives is over the importance of culture in brand building. When I explain that great brands are fueled by a clearly articulated purpose and meaningful principles or values...
Read Full Story // read more about: Marketing, Taco Bell
Brands are applying the fast casual model to modernize Italian cuisine.
Industry News
Modern Italian cuisine is the next big thing in fast casual. Or at least, that’s what some major quick-service operators are banking on. Fazoli’s and Sbarro each plan to debut a fast-casual Italian concept in the near future, following in the footsteps of successful regional brands fusing popular...
Read Full Story // read more about: Sbarro, Fazoli's, Piada, Italio
Menu management service Locu lets brands update their menus on Yelp instantly.
Technology
In today’s social world, customers expect the information they need and want within seconds. That’s why menu management service Locu is partnering with Yelp to let restaurants distribute and update their menus, daily specials, and photos on Yelp in real time. “Our goal at Locu is to help local...
Read Full Story // read more about: Ordering, Operations
Beef farmers are improving their operations to answer demand for sustainability.
Industry News
Miles removed from the nearest highway, shopping mall, and chain restaurant—or any restaurant at all—lie 40,000 acres of forest, meadows, and pastures, home to wildlife of all sorts and 1,400 head of Red Angus cattle. The herd, property of Meyer Company Ranch, roam free under the big sky of Montana...
Regional barbecue menu options give customers flavors of the community.
Menu Innovations
A great way to start an argument is to talk about America’s best barbecue. It’s a dispute that won’t be resolved. “A lot depends on where you were raised, because you get an emotional allegiance to one particular type of barbecue,” says Peter Reinhart, chef on assignment in the College of Culinary...
Very Cool
For many Americans, there’s nothing like drinking a tall, cold glass of iced tea on a hot summer’s day. Whether plain, sweetened, infused with fruit flavors, or part of a specialty beverage, iced tea is increasingly popular nationwide. Limited-service restaurants have seen solid growth with iced...
QSR has singled out quick service restaurants like Toppers Pizza as emerging concepts.
Where Are They Now?
Each month, QSR singles out the quick-service and fast-casual brands we think will make a splash in the industry. Sometimes we’re right, and sometimes we’re… well, not. So which Ones to Watch brands are still on fire, and which ones have had their growth hopes doused? Here’s a look back at 15 Ones...
Very Cool
For many Americans, there’s nothing like drinking a tall, cold glass of iced tea on a hot summer’s day. Whether plain, sweetened, infused with fruit flavors, or part of a specialty beverage, iced tea is increasingly popular nationwide. Limited-service restaurants have seen solid growth with iced...
Panera Gets High Tech
Panera Bread took a step into the future with the rollout of $42 million worth of ordering technology, dubbed “Panera 2.0.” The chain expects to better its customer experience inside and out with iPad ordering kiosks, mobile and online ordering interfaces, and a feature that lets guests order at...
Getting a Head Start
This year has been projected as a growth year for the restaurant industry, creating opportunities for entrepreneurs who dream of opening their own restaurant. Forty-seven percent of Americans’ food dollars are spent dining away from home, and restaurant sales are expected to hit a record high this...
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...
Auntie Anne’s invests in tomorrow’s talent.
Promise for the Future
Forget the age-old stereotype of teens being more interested in schlep than success. Auntie Anne’s corporate executives and franchise partners have seen first-hand that there is promising business potential in today’s high-school students. Fifty teens at the brand’s Leaders & Entrepreneurs...
Quick service brands leverage franchise system for strategic growth.
The Franchise Formula
For upstart quick-service restaurants considering the move to franchising, the path can precipitate a major shift in business model and operations. Beyond the economic investment in franchising, experts say, operators must ensure their brand will consistently deliver quality across all locations. “...
QSR has singled out quick service restaurants like Toppers Pizza as emerging concepts.
Where Are They Now?
Each month, QSR singles out the quick-service and fast-casual brands we think will make a splash in the industry. Sometimes we’re right, and sometimes we’re… well, not. So which Ones to Watch brands are still on fire, and which ones have had their growth hopes doused? Here’s a look back at 15 Ones...