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New marketing plan raises restaurant's profitability

The Frog and The Peach was established over twenty years ago and is known for its high-quality American cuisine and comfortable atmosphere. "Early on I saw a need to build a database of my frequent customers. Says Elizabeth Alger, owner of The Frog and The Peach restaurant in New Brunswick, New Jersey. We utilized a custom-made database to gather information and to process our birthday and anniversary mailings. The problem was that we were gathering all sorts of information, contact information including email address as well as dining habits of our guests, but never had a way to truly manage or use the information. By switching to the marketing software and by working closely with my own personal marketing coach, we are now building a database that is easy to use and is a useful tool for implementing and tracking marketing campaigns," adds Alger.

"My marketing coach has been a real saint-he is patient and knowledgeable. I know my particular market and I have a sense of which of the many marketing strategies is appropriate for my restaurant. My coach respects my perspective;he listens to what I have to say and then takes my ideas and goes from there. We've become a team. I don’t feel as though he is ubberstamping a packaged approach on my restaurant.

It is customized. Alger and her marketing coach, visit at least once a week (more often when needed) to discuss her marketing plans. In the last four months Alger has implemented a new birthday and anniversary marketing program. "It is considerably more efficient than my old program and it brings the Guests in much faster.” Alger is tracking her ROI (return on investment) for every marketing campaign she develops. I know with the additional areas that The RestaurantMarketingGroup has suggested that the ROI is going to be even better next month. RMG is focused on helping me assess the success of my marketing efforts. If the percentages appear to be lower than what they think I could do, my coach takes the time to suggest ways to bring them up. She continues, "Knowing exactly what each campaign has cost and how much return we get is really important. I like having that data at my fingertips.

We have evaluated all of the marketing programs that I used previously and RMG helped me change many things that have made my marketing more effective.” With a myriad of responsibilities that come with running a busy restaurant, Alger has hired a part-time assistant to help with the data entry needed to build her database and assist with other marketing duties. "I never had the ability to use the power of e-mail. The ability to send out emails is built into the software. We now send out messages to our guests via e-mail, which sometimes includes special offers and other times shares information such as announcing a special holiday menu. We are able to email particular information to those guests who are interested in a particular service or function niche such as monthly wine dinners or corporate dining. The feedback from our customers has been for the most part very positive," says Alger. RMG has suggested ways that I could assure that my already Four Star Service was delivered more reliably to each and every guest during each and every visit assuring an outstanding dining experience. My Coach has coached me on building customer loyalty and increasing the frequency of guest visits." She continues, "We are currently doing a campaign to develop relationships with the businesses that are within walking distance to the restaurant.

One of our employees is visiting those businesses, telling them about our Holiday Gift Certificate program that can benefit their employees and their preferred customers. RMG has developed programs that are directed to dramatically increase the Gift Certificate Sales. In addition, we've been networking with our vendors, something I would have never thought of. I sent each one of our vendors a letter offering our Holiday Gift Certificates to their employees and their preferred customers. It's a brand new marketing campaign and it's a little too early to assess its success, but it seems to be going very well. I have made a commitment to grow my business to a higher level. I am clear that RMG will provide access to attaining this goal," says Alger. The RestaurantMarketingGroup has helped me better define my Target Markets and has the flexibility to have special events for different groups of customers.


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