For all of us working in the restaurant and food and beverage businesses – staying ahead is getting tougher everyday. Backed by our team of analysts and over 50 years marketing food and dining brands, we uncover the insights and trends behind news and events.

From sunny Scottsdale, Arizona (and wherever our travels bring us) we produce the Food and Restaurant Marketing podcast – where we discuss the technology, trends, relationships and business of food. In each episode, Dan Santy and Adam Pierno dig into the meaning behind the news in Restaurant marketing.

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Latest episode:

What is ‘Better For You?’ with Leah McGrath of Ingles Markets. There’s a lot riding on brands that successfully offer ‘better for you’ options. And there are even more opinions about what that even means. How do we understand what really is? We talk to a Registered Dietitian, of course. Leah McGrath joins for a great conversation about fact, fiction and marketing.

Would you prefer a transcript? Read here.


Looking for podcast guests.

We’re looking for experts on the brand and operations side to appear on Season 3 of the podcast and share their thoughts. Topics for Season 3 include:

Technology vs. Hospitality, Recruiting, Proximity Marketing.

Email us and let us know!

Previous Episodes:

Amazing Culture with Kaffee Hopkins. How can you get your guests feeling welcome? Make the staff feel welcome first. According to our guest, Kaffee Hopkins, it all starts from the inside-out. And she’s got the experience to know. Want the transcript? Read here.

Living Brand Authenticity with Zac Painter of Fatz Cafe
Authenticity has become a buzzword today. Zac Painter of Fatz Cafe joins us to talk about how the southern kitchen concept works to bring authenticity to life. This is a great one. Want to read a transcript? Read here.

A Funeral for Retail. Dan and Adam look at the media’s obsession with retails downward trend. Is retail dying? Probably not, but no question something’s going to change. Prefer a transcript? Read here or read the companion article here.

Cord Cutting, Television and the Restaurant Industry
The media is absolutely obsessed with the death of television. Dan Santy and Adam Pierno dive into the facts from Gfk MRI and discuss what’s really going on, and why it’s important to restaurant brands.
Read the transcript? Read here.

Creating Interest with Lucas Clarke of MAD Greens
Fast casual salad concept MAD Greens is doing a lot of things right as they continue to grow. In this interesting conversation, Lucas Clarke joins us to talk about their approach to captivating customers.
Transcript here.

Season 1

Is Your Brand Ready for a Mobile App?
As part of our editorial series on the mobile app environment for restaurant brands of all sizes, Dan and Adam discuss the good, the bad and the beautiful about mobile apps. When they’re great, and what makes them fall flat. Thinking about a mobile app for your brand? Give this a listen first.

Read these companion articles for more context and information:
The Pros. The Cons. Want the transcript? Read here.

Casual Dining Moves Upstream Earlier this season, Dan and Adam looked at the reasons why brands fail to extend into new markets. Now we discuss the flip side with a couple of Casual Dining brands that have launched new endeavors into the Fast Casual space and discuss which brands did it best: Denny’s, Tony Roma’s or Cracker Barrel.

Ready? Let’s go! Prefer a transcript? Read along here.

Steal Your Share The media simply won’t stop reporting that Casual Dining is a dying breed. What does that mean for the people at the helm of those brands? Dan and Adam dig in to discuss the changing restaurant environment and ways that Casual Dining brands can fight and win their share of dining occasions.

Have a seat and dig in. Check out the episode transcript here.

What is Your Brand Movie? With the premiere of The Founder, the story of the humble beginnings of McDonald’s, Dan and Adam wonder what makes a great brand story. If your customers were asked, would they be able to conjure a tale about your brand? If so, are you sure you’d want to hear it?

Sit back and enjoy the show! Transcript here.

Why Does Restaurant Traffic Die?
If 2016 has taught us anything, it is that no brand is invulnerable to restaurant traffic cutting off at some point in time. Every brand faces change in different ways. What makes an unstoppable brand lose the flow of customers? And more importantly, what can head off those changes?

Let’s discuss! Prefer a transcript? Read along here.

Does Discounting Make People Like Your Brand?
Every restaurant brand discounts to drive traffic or sales. We look at the ways consumers understand discounting and couponing and how they react to each. Hint: It’s not always good. Dan and Adam dive in to LTOs, FSIs, dayparting strategies and some behavioral economics.

Ready to join us? Let’s go. Rather read a transcript? Read along here.

Restaurant Loyalty Programs: The Ups & Downs

Customers love free things. Or discounted things. Does that make restaurant loyalty programs contingent on giving freebies a great idea for every concept? Not necessarily. This week, Dan Santy and Adam Pierno look at the strategic work that goes into deciding on a program and compares brands doing it well, and not so well.

Do all restaurant loyalty programs inspire loyalty? Let’s find out. Can’t listen? Read our transcript.

Brand Extensions: Why Restaurants Struggle to Extend

On this episode of the Food & Restaurant Marketing Podcast – we look at the pullback by Red Robin and Jamba Juice from problematic attempts at brand extensions and try to understand what went wrong. Of course, Dan and Adam examine some success stories and the challenges inside brands that lead to flawed decisions.

Why do restaurants struggle to extend their core brands? Let’s discuss. Read the transcript here.

The End is Nigh: Planning for the coming recession

This time on the Food & Restaurant Marketing Podcast, Dan Santy lays out the signs that another recession is upon us, and discusses with Adam Pierno how restaurants can plan and prepare to overcome the down market.Can restaurants thrive in a bear market? Let’s dive in together. Transcript here.

How can restaurants fend off grocery and prepared foods?

This time on the Food & Restaurant Marketing Podcast, Mr. Pierno and Mr. Santy investigate the ways that the improvements made in the grocery prepared offering have hurt restaurants and the four ways restaurants can fight back. With so much cost pressure on restaurants, how can they win this battle? We explore, join us.

How long is the long tail in CPG product innovation?

On this episode of the Food & Restaurant Marketing Podcast Dan and Adam look at the uphill climb of CPG products clawing for shelf space. Every brand is born from the idea of solving a need for an ideal customer, but most aren’t able to distill that vision. We discuss the challenges from the brand and the retailer side of the issue.

Chipotle goes all in on food safety.

On this episode of the Food & Restaurant Marketing podcast, we have a lively discussion on the newest marketing moves at Chipotle putting much more focus on food safety in their trade and content marketing. This in light of apparent lapses in food safety and has the brand turning their back on their food with purpose platform.

Is this the right course for the embattled brand? Let’s dig in.

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