There are few brands that can claim its fans are so passionate they cry when a new restaurant opens, but ever since Momma Goldberg’s Deli was founded 40 years ago in Auburn, Alabama, it has commanded a loyal consumer base in the state. Now expanding throughout the Deep South, Momma Goldberg’s is inspiring this love throughout the region.
“We have three to four generations of Auburn graduates who crave our sandwiches and wait in lines 20 to 30 feet deep because they don’t have our sandwiches in their towns,” says Nick Davis, president of Momma Goldberg’s Deli and former brand franchisee. “I didn’t believe the hype, but when we opened the store in Huntsville, people were crying and taking pictures with the sign, and we were blown away by the passion for this brand.”
Part of this love is inspired by the brand’s family-friendly atmosphere, while craveable steamed sandwiches offer customers and franchisees a unique dining option.
“The difference between us and other people who heat their meat with steam is we heat the entire sandwich with steam once a sandwich is put together,” Davis says. “The whole sandwich goes into a steamer.”
Though this classic brand sticks to its comfort food roots, the company’s image has been modernized for a new era. Featuring industrial touches, rustic reclaimed lumber, and a color scheme of grays and oranges, the vibrant design of Momma Goldberg’s Deli promises to entice customers with an exciting yet homey atmosphere.
Momma Goldberg’s Deli began franchising in 2006, and as it looks to continue its growth, the company is searching for multi-unit franchisees in Southeastern markets. Priority markets include Huntsville, Alabama; Nashville, Tennessee; and Charleston, South Carolina, though the brand is also planning to fill in built areas, such as South Georgia and North Florida. Franchisees must also have the financial support to invest in their stores as they grow.
Most locations measure between 1,800 and 2,400 square feet, and the Momma Goldberg’s Deli team will help franchisees choose visible, accessible sites. In addition, franchisees are brought to Auburn or other corporate training markets pre-opening, and a support team assists with the first week of operations.
“It’s a family business, and it’s just great because people love and are passionate about the brand,” Davis says. “But it is also a tough brand because it’s not a known brand, so there is a lot of community involvement with franchisees, managers, and key operators. People who are successful are involved in communities and know people.”
As Momma Goldberg’s Deli has a long history of being a local favorite at Auburn, it makes sense that its regional success would continue to stem from its communities. One successful brand operator is a school teacher who has used his community connections to drive brand growth and foster a passionate fan base in that region.
“People really love the brand in addition to the food,” Davis says. “People don’t love a lot of concepts, but they really seem to love Momma’s.”
For more information about franchising opportunities with Momma Goldberg’s Deli, visit www.MommaGoldbergsDeli.com
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