Tuesday, September 29, 2020

At Chain Restaurants Leadership Matters


Is your restaurant brand recycling leadership from a bygone era? Do the action plans, marketing messaging, and turn-around plan look more like yesterday’s plans?  Results matter and if we have learned anything in 2020 according to Steven Johnson, Grocerant Guru® at Tacoma, WA based Foodservice Solutions® in 2020 the status quo is not.  Johnson ask his team to ‘Look A Customer Ahead’ rather than doing what’s always been done.  Here is an example of what can happen if you Look A Customer Ahead.

At the intersection of year over year customer count increases or decreases are the data points (touchtones) of customer relevance.  At times its important to look back in order to look forward. So, back in the day (2009), Domino’s awoke from a long period of brand protectionism practices, self-imposed rules that contributed to stifling sales growth, product quality, and a loss of customer relevance.  Domino’s was the first major retail brand to discard its core product for and completely new one since the failed rebranding of Coco Cola. It was a huge risk.  Guess what Domino’s won.

Domino’s did what I call Ground Branding.  It is not back to the basic’s it is a macro step not a micro step it’s a step into the future of brand marketing, positioning and essential for legacy brands continued consumer relevance. Ground Branding means repositioning a product or a company focusing on the core foundation of the legacy product or companies’ value with a dramatic shift in contemporized customer relevance.  Simply put incremental steps are not enough today. 

In Seth Godin's book Purple Cow where an entrepreneur wants to recapture some of the magic that the brand at one time had. Godin suggests that the key to success is finding a way to stand out and be remarkable, like a purple cow in a field of regular cows. That’s what Domino’s did and the company has never looked back.

Battle for Share of Stomach

Domino’s Pizza Inc. some eleven years later continues to see sales rise.  Domini’s stock price is up 300% over the past five years alone driven by continue year over year same store sales growth.  Customer relevance drive momentum in customer trial, adoption and on wall street.

Rebuilding customer relevance is important if a brand somehow grows out of touch.  At Domino’s the problem was the core product its pizza.  The customer is dynamic not static any your brand must be as well.  Is your brand still doing what you have always done and doing it the same way?  Does your brand look more like yesterday than today? What role does brand protectionism play in your restaurant, deli, or bodega?

The challenged for any grocerant niche Ready-2-Eat or Heat-N-Eat fresh prepared food retailer is the ability to see and understand the customers focus at its core and then evolve.  Note: not your brands core; the customers core focus.  Being dynamic not static. Success does leave clues and companies leading the charge in 2021 will be leaders within their niche for years to come.

Food retailers that do not evolve be warned that the rest of will be reading headlines that C-level change is coming or came at your company. Without bold new young leaders many legacy retail food brands may simply become non relevant. Are you still recycling yesterday’s leaders? What attributes should a young leader have today vs a recycled leader? Do you need outside eyes to help drive top line sale and bottom line profits?

Are you trapped doing what you have always done and doing it the same way?  Interested in learning how Foodservice Solutions FIVE P’s of Food Marketing can edify your retail food brand while creating a platform for consumer convenient meal participationdifferentiation and individualization?  Email us at: Steve@FoodserviceSolutions.us or visit:  www.FoodserviceSolutions.us

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