Tell them what’s in it for them

 In 7. David Militello, Marketing, Of Interest

Authored by David Militello

Everyday we’ve all been listening, waiting, watching the whirlwind of news from the recent election to the “goat rodeo” of a stock market. I think it is safe to say this time of year, the economy and the consumer confidence level is affecting all of us on some level. I was on the phone with my coach (restaurant expert David Scott Peters) talking about marketing ideas this past Thursday. “Family style” this and “Kids Eat Free” that…bundle, bundle, bundle!

Through our conversation Coach Peters started me on a journey to take some action, as he does so well. He told me about a statement made by Ted Turner regarding the controversial bail out. He said something along the lines of, and I’m paraphrasing here, If we’re going to bail out anybody, we need to bail out the restaurant industry. Everybody’s suffering in the restaurant industry!

That being said the first thing on my list was to attack my menu because I knew I could get immediate results with little effort. I did some menu engineering and kicked out some “dogs” and changed the recipes on some “challenging” items, I also looked at a few prepared products that wouldn’t sacrifice quality if I changed a few things to save some money.

I highly encourage you to challenge your vendors to find these little gems for you.

I also decided to refresh my menu cover and ended up with a wonderful marketing piece and mission statement clearly defining what YOU as the guest will get when you come to my restaurant. The biggest challenge was to stop telling customers what we (restaurateur) offer them and to answer for them, “What’s in it for me(Guest)?”

Here are two versions. One is the original version, and the other is the one I revised to be all about the guest. It’s the final version. Line by line you’ll notice how we turned “what we offer” (as the restaurateur) to “whats in it for me” (as the guest).

Here are some tips to follow:

1. Can you answer this question with a guest mindset? What’s in it for me? Why should I eat here? What does this statement really mean?

2. Stop talking about yourself and what you do for the guest. That’s selfish and doesn’t convey meaning to the guest.

3. Read it aloud…Does it sound pompous? Or does it sound sincere and believable? Are you talking to one person or making general statements to a large crowd?

4. Bold, Highlight and Underline keywords like FREE and YOU.

5. Use headlines to grab the reader.

6. AGAIN….What is in it for the GUEST (not) What do YOU offer to your guests.

7. Use this copy as the foundation of your marketing.

I hope you are all doing well in these tough times and I hope to see and speak with you very soon. If you’re a member of David Scott Peters, everyone’s favorite restaurant expert, please get on the Web site and schedule some coaching time to talk further about this topic or anything else that I can help with. www.therestaurantexpert.com

David Militello is a multi-unit, multi-concept restaurant owner based in Southaven, Mich., www.lakeshoredining.com. Dave is a man of opportunity and music. If he wasn’t a restaurant owner, he’d probably be playing drums in a band touring the world. Dave is a part of the restaurant expert David Scott Peters’ coaching team. He offers expertise in managing multiple locations, catering, employee development and systems implementation.

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