Restaurant Consumers' Multidimensional Definition of Value Emphasizes the Overall Dining Experience


  As consumer attitudes shift, Technomic Inc.'s study explores current foodservice value proposition.

CHICAGO, Sept. 22, 2015 – PRNewswire

Nearly 80 percent of consumers say that "value" is very important in their decision of where to dine—but their definition of foodservice value depends on many factors, including service and, increasingly, overall ambiance and the quality of menu offerings. While price will always play a major role, delivering on these multidimensional elements of value is crucial as consumer attitudes toward dining out shift and operational costs rise. To combat this, operators must increase emphasis on the overall dining experience, finds Technomic's Value & Pricing Consumer Trend Report.

"While food quality remains essential, the overall experience is becoming more important to today's diners who are looking for fun, social and unique dining occasions," suggests Kelly Weikel, director of consumer insights. "Service and atmosphere make up about 40 percent of Gen Zers' and Millennials' value equations at all types of limited- and full-service restaurants. They are looking for experiences they can share—both by connecting with others in the dining party and through social media."

Compiling findings from more than 1,500 U.S. consumers, as well as Technomic's MenuMonitor, Consumer Brand Metrics and Top 500 Restaurant Chain Report, the Value & Pricing Consumer Trend Report also reveals:

  • 47 percent of Millennials indicate they are seeking higher-quality fare more now than in 2013;
  • 53 percent of  loyalty card holders are very likely to base their restaurant decision on a loyalty membership;
  • The most influential deals are "Buy One Get One Free" and "Half-Off Specials."

The Value & Pricing Consumer Trend Report is one of many topics in Technomic's Consumer Trend Report series offering the most current analysis, insight and opportunities to help grow your business. Our best-in-class intelligence combines 50 years of foodservice expertise with critical findings from over 7,000 menus per year and nearly 30,000 annual consumer interviews.

About Technomic: Only Technomic, A Winsight Company, delivers a 360-degree view of the food industry. We impact growth and profitability for our clients by providing consumer-grounded vision and channel-relevant strategic insights. Our services range from major research studies and management consulting solutions to online databases and simple fact-finding assignments. Our clients include food manufacturers and distributors, restaurants and retailers, or other foodservice organizations, and various institutions aligned with the food industry. Visit us at

(via PR Newswire)


How to Have a Successful Opening Night


So, you’ve built your restaurant, you’ve hired your staff, you’re ready to open. You want to make sure you have a very successful opening night for your restaurant. There’s a lot of preparation that needs to go into that night. A lot of training of the staff, and a lot of testing of the menu, and it’s very important to give yourself the opportunity to try to operate without the public being in your restaurant.

One of the ways that you can to do that even before constructions final, if you have enough staff to do it, invite some friend in, give them a dining experience, ask them for their honest feedback. What went well? What didn’t work? It’s a great opportunity to prepare for opening night by having a dress rehearsal with people who you’ve invited and who you care about. Give them a free meal and ask them for their honest feedback in return.

Once you have all that information, you need to promote your opening night. You need to get the word out. You need to let the world know that you are opening your restaurant. You might want to do that with a press release. You might want to do that by having flyers that you hand out. You might want to put out some sort of notice on the Internet on your website. You may want to actually send specific invitations to people that you know and say, we’re opening and we’d be delighted to have you to come in and experience our new restaurant.

Challenges with an opening night are that you don’t want too little business but you also don’t want too much. Too little business well feel like a downer, too much business will create bad experiences that will set a bad first impression and will not create good word of mouth from the beginning. Now most dinners know that on opening night a restaurant, just like a new theater production can be a little weak in the knees, but if they have to wait an hour and a half for their food they might not come back and they’re going to tell everybody they know the story. So you want to prepare. Think about the perfect number of people to have your first day is and shoot for that number.

Maybe you want to limit your hours at first. Maybe you just want to open just for lunch or just for dinner to start. Maybe you want to offer a somewhat smaller menu than you will actually ultimately offer your guests. It’s important to remember that you have to walk before you can run in the restaurant business, and it’s better to serve a few people and give them a great time, than to serve a large number of people and have a mediocre time.

Preparing for a great opening night also involves your attitude because things will go wrong. This is a restaurant that’s never been opened to the public before and all of a sudden all these many different moving parts have to operate in sync. So, you need to be prepared to smile and believe and enable your staff to believe that you’re having a good time, that it’s going well no matter what happens. Obviously if something serious you need to take care it, but on your face and in your demeanor what you should project is, this is a great night and we’re having a great time, and this is going to be a great restaurant.

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