NPL had their last client meeting two weeks later. The following were our final proposed ideas:
Repositioning – Consider changing the theme of the restaurant to something that the patrons can identify with. While paintings by Jonathan Green may be beautiful and colorful, the people in Hampton, SC may identify with more traditional art. Pick pieces that can help to generate a local atmosphere.
Change the look and possibly the items offered in the menu. Not everyone is going to be interested in having fresh New England clam chowder, but they might be interested in simple shrimp and grits.
Qualitative marketing research – A simple questionnaire or even non-focused face-to-face discussions with her patrons while they are eating could provide powerful insights. From what patrons like and don’t like to community groups and how her restaurant could become involved.
Community outreach – NPL strongly suggested that she become involved with the local schools, farmers and government officials. She could offer the restaurant as a meeting place or possibly special discounts for target groups. NPL thought that it would be a nice idea for the home economics class to have a lock-in at the restaurant to learn about cooking.
The client stated that while these were all good ideas that they simply didn’t have the time or money to invest in these changes.
The restaurant eventually closed and the client returned to Charleston to manage a successful five star restaurant.
Blocked in on all sides
Sometimes location can be very important, but other times a poor location can be just as bad as no location. Think about that the next time you are organizing your offer or looking to open a new location.
Part 1 – Bad locations are just as bad as no location
Part 2 – Bad locations are just as bad as no location
Soon to come… How product placement and location can be used to be brilliant for your audiences.
Most of us have been taught the importance of location and placement. You wouldn’t go to a grocery store if you found the cereals in the freezer section or the beer on several different aisles. But that is exactly what happens when your business or product has a poor location or placement.
I remember that about four years ago a woman approached Newman Partnership Ltd. (NPL) for a market research project for her restaurant. The restaurant was located in a small town outside of Charleston, SC. And she wanted to know why her restaurant was failing. She had been a successful restaurant manager, but this was her first personal endeavor.
It only took me about 15 minutes of observational research to understand the trouble. She had opened a four star restaurant in a two star town. While the menu was reasonably priced, the atmosphere was extremely artistic. And the only people dinning there were wearing flannel shirts and baseball caps for John Deer.
The client explained to NPL that business was only really booming during a single time in the year, the Hampton County Watermelon Festival. But during the rest of the year she could barely stay in business.
Although I already knew the answer to her problem, I asked that she give me a few weeks to do some research, think about her problem and develop a few options.
(Lloyd N. Newman’s , founder of the Newman Partnership Ltd., favorite answer, “Let me think about it.”)
This is the first of a three-part blog. Next time I will discuss the initial ideas that Newman Partnership Ltd. brought to the table. And why, in some cases, a poor location is just as bad as having no location.