Qualitative Case Studies

 

RESTAURANT LOCAL CONSUMER ENGAGEMENT

CHALLENGE:

An Italian restaurant experienced significant annual declines in gross revenues after the month of February. Further analysis concluded that a great majority of the consumer base were seasonal residents.

SOLUTION:

Conducted IDIs and focus groups to ascertain the disconnection between local consumers and the restaurant.

 

RESULTS:

Research revealed that the restaurant prices were not in alignment with the consumer perceived value of its product offerings. Often the prices were comparable to that of national or regional chain brands with similar product offerings (i.e. Olive Garden, Carrabba’s, etc.). Thus the restaurant should reduce the pricing of its product offerings to align with consumers’ perceived value.

Research revealed that restaurant product offering were not kid friendly, did not provide small plate entrees and lacked appetizer offerings. Thus the restaurant could develop a kid’s menu comprised of mostly finger foods and fruit; lunch portion entrees and expand its appetizer offerings.

Research revealed that consumers are more likely to frequent places that they perceive to have a great ambience and the potential for memorable experiences. Thus changing the aesthetics and installing an audio and/or visual system in the restaurant could prove vital to accomplishing this goal.

Research revealed that the current advertising strategy had little to no penetration rate with the local consumers, because it was not utilizing the right median to reach them. Research also revealed that local consumers were heavily involved in community activities that centered on the youth and support local businesses that shared this interest. Thus sponsoring the jerseys of the local little league baseball team and adopting the local Girl Scout troop could prove to strengthen the restaurant’s brand in the community. Also establishing an affiliation with local organizations to host and sponsor their events allows for reverse marketing and co-branding opportunities.

The over-arching theme of the market research findings is that the local consumer will support the restaurant based on the product being priced at a price point of perceived value; a more consumer friendly menu and dining experience and local community investment.

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