Oh, what a Franchisee could do with Local Store Sales Tactics!

Oh, what a Franchisee could do with Local Store Sales Tactics!

I am always amazed at restaurant chains that do not offer Local Store Marketing Sales Tactics to franchisees after they finish training and head back home to open their new restaurant.

I highly recommend presenting franchisees with a robust portfolio of Local Store Marketing Sales Tactics as they graduate from Franchise Training School.

I can hear this happening all too many times. “Congratulations Franchisees! You are now graduates of our prestigious Franchise Training School. Soon you will be opening a new restaurant. Your restaurant will be in a new community, in a new state far, far away where no one knows your concept and you may or may not have expertise on how to market your restaurant if sales start declining. Good luck!”

When restaurants open to less than stellar sales, this can be very deflating to employee morale and cause panic in a highly leveraged franchisee. This in turn starts the endless phone calls to the Marketing Department looking for their immediate help with marketing their location.

Once a franchisee’s sales start to decline, most Marketing Departments can’t provide the manpower or Local Store Marketing support needed to a single franchise owner. It takes five times the amount of energy and money to go back into a franchised area to reverse the sales trends. When all you really needed to do was offer Local Store Sales Tactics from the beginning.

That is what we do. Big Idea’s Local Store Sales and Relationship Building Tactics prepare franchisees for the real world. We provide the programs and tactics needed to build community relationships and sales. Our programs teach franchisees how to turn a first-time guest into a regular guest and brand advocate. If you care about your guests, they will care about you and keep coming back.

Plus, who doesn’t like getting fewer frantic phone calls from franchisees. This is enough to make a marketing person smile.

My recommendation for you in 2017, is to let us put together a portfolio of Local Store Sales and Relationship Building Tactics that franchisees can use immediately in their communities once the grand opening festivities are over and restaurant ownership begins. Call us for a quote.

Clint Schwald                                                                                            Founder, President                                                                                              Big Idea Marketing, Inc.                                                                                  949-716-5285

Clint Schwald founded Big Idea after 25 years of restaurant marketing experience holding senior level positions with Stuart Anderson’s Black Angus, Taco Bell, Chevy’s Fresh Mex and T.G.I. Fridays. Clint has been a featured speaker at a variety of restaurant trade shows and has had articles featured in major publications including Nation’s Restaurant News. He is the creator of the wildly successful Local Store Marketing 90-Day Challenge®.

#cardealerships – for Restaurant Sales


I have found that car dealerships can be great sales generators for restaurants. A lot of large dealerships have end-of-the-month and holiday sales events that offer food, drink and fun for customers who drop by to take advantage of the great deals. These events may require restaurant support such as catering, take-out or delivery services. In addition, how about offering a free appetizer certificate to everyone that test drives a new car during the sales event. It gets their customers into your restaurant as potential new, regular guests.

Along with customer events, car dealerships also have monthly staff meetings for the Sales Department and/or Service Departments. They often have these meetings catered from local restaurants.

Stop by a car dealership and ask for the General Manager or Sales Manager. It never hurts to ask to be their restaurant of choice for their upcoming sales promotion. Just think how great it would be to land a nice, big catering order or two this holiday season.

If you are passionate about building long-term, loyal relationships in your local community, check out our new Local Store Marketing blog series at bigideamarketing.net/blog. If you need assistance in Local Store Marketing, call us at 949-285-8554. Thanks!

Coupon Distribution “Rule of Thumb”


The Rule of 30

Remember this Rule:
• Distribute 30 bounceback coupons.
• 10 recipients will keep their coupons to possibly use before they expire.
• 1 coupon will be use immediately.

The important part of this equation is the 1 redemption. Even if you distribute only 60 coupons a week, that would translate to two plus new guest visits (with co-workers, friends and family tagging along). I’m sold.

Atmosphere Will Make You Stronger


I was working with a large restaurant chain to help them identify the issues in their restaurant that were causing a slow and steady downward sales trend.

I sat observing the daily routine of the server and manager interactions with guests. Their food and service seemed great so I decided to spend time in the restaurant just observing when I noticed something. The speaker above my table was blown out and all that was audible was a kazoo band so I moved to a different table. As I sat down, I also noticed that one of the lights above my table was shining directly in my eyes like a Klieg light at an airport so I got up and sat at another table. I then started sitting in every seat in the restaurant and making notes. It seemed that almost every table had an issue such as leg pinching upholstery tears, wobbly tables, one table with a direct view into the the restroom, glares off car windshields, burnt out lights and several tables that I could watch employees smoking cigarettes outside during their break.

Their food and service was good but that’s where it ended. The guest experience was compromised not by their food, beverage or service but by guest experience once they sat down. I invite you to become a guest and sit in every seat in your restaurant and see what your guest sees, hears and feels. Yes, it’s true “atmosphere will make you stronger.”

Clint Schwald, Big Idea Marketing, Inc.

Need Restaurant Sales? Ask an Employee!

The Holidays – The Super Bowl for Restaurant Sales!

The Holidays – The Super Bowl of Sales for your Restaurants

Almost every business, school and resident in your community will have a reason to purchase food, beverage and gifts during the holiday season. No matter your restaurant concept you have the opportunity to dramatically increase your sales.

Focus on the low hanging fruit. Large party reservations, take out, delivery, catering and gift card sales are all opportunities for sales increases.

It’s not too late to put together a holiday group sales game plan. Whether it’s a large scale promotional campaign or a “boots-on-the-ground” local store marketing program, getting the word out is profitable. If you don’t tell the local business and residential communities about your holiday line-up, no one will know and they will go elsewhere.

I tell my clients to get out into the local community and “make the boss a hero” at local businesses by visiting their business, telling them about your holiday programs and taking care of all the details for the boss to make their end-of-the-year holiday celebration a memorable experience. Seriously, most bosses would just as soon write you a check and have the celebration go off without a hitch.

We find that giving managers and franchisees tactics that work outside the restaurant’s front door pays dividends immediately.

Every holiday season our clients see an average of a 15%+ increase in sales over the previous months.

If you are a veteran at group sales, then get out into your community and let people know. Recruit energetic employees to drop off promotional materials at local businesses. Post your group sales opportunities on your social media sites. It’s not too early to start promoting the holidays. You should plan on visiting each business three times during the holidays. This way you will stay top-of-mind when they decide to place an order.

If you are a restaurant manager or franchise owner currently not involved in group sales, we recommend using very simple, smaller executional programs that provide opportunities to expand and promote your brand outside of the store but will also get your teams acclimated to taking and fulfilling pre-arranged orders.

By starting with smaller programs, this will help train managers and franchisees as they build into larger events. Plus, we have found that smaller customer orders will lead to customers thinking of you for larger orders because their confidence level in your execution goes up.

Offer guests various pick-up and catering options that will make their job easier. We recommend focusing on smaller group sales opportunities within a ½-mile radius of your restaurant. Promoting pick-up for small catering orders is the first step toward building confidence in your catering ability both with your restaurant team and your customers.

Being able to take your business outside the four-walls and into the community provides a unique competitive advantage.

Not only are businesses a prime target but contact public and private schools and offer to cater their teacher, staff and PTA holiday and end-of-the-year celebrations. This can help get your foot in the door for future school programs throughout the semesters.

I tell my clients that 100% of the flyers, bouncebacks and catering menus that don’t get distributed also don’t get redeemed or used. Guaranteed. Happy Holidays!

If you would like us to help create your holiday game plan, send me an email. We would love to help.

Thank you,
Clint Schwald

Big Idea Marketing, Inc.

Promoting your Restaurant to School Teachers