The Catering Software Corner Blog

Tax Season Is Catering Season

Posted by Michael Attias on Wed, Feb 25, 2015 @ 11:25 AM

April 15th sends chills down the backs of many people. For some it means a big tax bill and for others an extension is filed; delaying the inevitable. 

April 15th is Christmas for CPA’s and tax preparers. From about now until tax day, accountants, bookkeepers and tax prep firms will be working feverishly to process mountains of returns for their clients. 

This means many late nights and weekends away from home. 

When asked why he robbed banks, the famous bank robber Willie Sutton replied, “Because that’s where the money is.” 

And so it goes with finding catering niches. If a person or niche is spending money to feed a group, then the efficient marketer needs to pursue that niche. 

Whenever employees have to put in extra hours at night or on weekends, you’d better believe the company is bringing in food for their team. 

Pink Logan, a longtime member, sent out a letter to CPA firms soliciting his catering business during tax prep time. I believe he picked up around three thousand dollars in drop off catering. 

As a result of that idea, I created a sales letter targeted to CPA’s. The background of the letter was a 1040 tax form. Members can find that letter template at our members only website; RestaurantProfitPoint.com 

http://www.restaurantprofitpoint.com/members/109.cfm 

Many prudent members have used this promotion with great success. Yesterday I was talking with a client who used the promotion for a second year in a row. Right off the bat he landed a deal to deliver $600 in catering a week from now until April 15th to a single CPA firm. I know he’ll land other CPA businesses. 

Marketing is not some big mystery. It doesn’t have to require the budget of Nike or Coca-Cola. With the software and services available today, the little guy can look like a big guy. 

Niche marketing allows you to focus a small amount of resources on a very tight group of high probability catering prospects. Some of my biggest catering victories have come from niche marketing. For instance, One year I targeted twenty hospitals with my famous x-ray mailer for hospital week catering opportunities. 

Twenty mailers brought in over $17,000 worth of catering.

There are less than two months to April 15th. Will you choose to read this article and ponder or take action? 

Small successes lead to more successes. My first marketing success in booking catering lead to another and another…eventually leading me to start this company.

For me marketing is fun. When it brings in sales, it is downright addicting! Try it. You just may get hooked.  

NOTE: Last year I put on a full day catering seminar in Baltimore with one of my most successful clients and longtime member, Frank D’Antona with Cantina Mamma Lucia in Baltimore, Maryland. We had to turn people away last year. 

One attendee, Vince with Trinacria credits us with his best catering Christmas season. He did over a hundred thousand dollars in catering for December 2014 versus $12,000 in 2013. 

Saval Foodservice is sponsoring the event this year. It will be held Monday, May 18, 2015 near the Baltimore airport. 

So if you have any interest, please go to www.CateringSeminars.com/baltimore for complete details. Hope you can join us.

Well, that’s all for this issue. 

To Your Restaurant's Marketing & Catering Success,

Michael Attias

Restaurant Catering Software 

P.S. – If you need help growing catering sales, then please go to www.RestaurantCateringSoftware.com and download my free eBook: Cater or Die! 

P.P.S. – I make a limited number of time slots available each week for a free Catering Strategy Session with me. (You also get a catering menu critique and free analysis of your website for “Catering Effectiveness”). For complete details and to grab one of the limited spots, please go to:

http://www.restaurantcateringsoftware.com/catering-planning-strategy-session 

P.P.P.S. – Please check out my podcast at www.RestaurantCateringSmarts.com

P.P.P.P.S. - Anyone wishing to reprint my articles may do so. Please email me for the bi-line to use for proper author’s credits.

Topics: catering, catering software, catering marketing, catering niches, catering to cpa firms, catering sales templates

Email Templates Now In Catering Software

Posted by Michael Attias on Tue, Feb 17, 2015 @ 10:57 AM

As much as we would all like to stay digital and avoid paper, there is no way around it.

Email deliverability and open rates keep dropping. As hard as we try, the spam folder still manages to catch some of our emails.

Being one hundred percent dependent on email as our sole marketing vehicle amounts to suicide. At least once a month you must use snail mail to reach out to your database of catering prospects and customers. 

Being that the average catering order starts in the hundreds of dollars and can run into the thousands, you don’t want to leave your future catering business in the hands of just email.

With that being said, don’t abandon email. Considering it is basically free to use and quick to set up, this extra touch point is a must on your monthly marketing list.

You never know when that perfect catering prospect is ready to give you a shot, so make sure your name is always at the top of their mind. If you can’t be number one, then make sure you’re their number two.

For years I have been teaching and preaching the virtues of a monthly email touch points. Whether you are promoting a seasonal menu or a monthly special, take a few minutes to create and send that email.

Up until now, Restaurant Catering Systems required you to create your own email promotion from scratch and copy and paste it into our email editor. We do have marketing templates you can use for inspiration on our members only website; www.RestaurantProfitPoint.com.

One thing I have learned over the years; make things as easy as possible for our clients.

Restaurant Catering Systems has just built an email template system.

Each month Jillian will be writing three timely emails you can use to communicate with your catering prospects and clients 

These email templates are preloaded into our catering software. Just click on the month you want to promote to see all of the email templates.

278_Email_Templates

Once opened, just click on the Preview link to see the email.

278_Email_Templates_2

When you’ve decided on your email template for the month, just hit the “Create Campaign” button and follow the steps. You can create the emails in advance and pick the date and time for it to go out.

On a side note, I would only send out text based, not html based, emails. Though the pictures can look very attractive, they shout out “I’m an ad”!

Text based emails are how we communicate with our friends and business associates. The open and read rate is much higher.

Whether you choose to use one of our email templates or create your own, please don’t let a month go by without sending at least one out. I can tell you from personal experience; the months I fail to send out my blog article, sales suffer.

NOTE: Last year I put on a full day catering seminar in Baltimore with one of my most successful clients and longtime member, Frank D’Antona with Cantina Mamma Lucia in Baltimore, Maryland. We had to turn people away last year.

One attendee, Vince with Trinacria credits us with his best catering Christmas season. He did over a hundred thousand dollars in catering for December 2014 versus $12,000 in 2013.

Saval Foodservice is sponsoring the event this year. It will be held Monday, May 18, 2015 near the Baltimore airport.

So if you have any interest, please go to www.CateringSeminars.com/baltimore for complete details. Hope you can join us.

Well, that’s all for this issue.

To Your Restaurant's Marketing & Catering Success,

Michael Attias

Restaurant Catering Software

P.S. – If you need help growing catering sales, then please go to www.RestaurantCateringSoftware.com and download my free eBook: Cater or Die!

P.P.S. – I make a limited number of time slots available each week for a free Catering Strategy Session with me. (You also get a catering menu critique and free analysis of your website for “Catering Effectiveness”). For complete details and to grab one of the limited spots, please go to:

http://www.restaurantcateringsoftware.com/catering-planning-strategy-session

P.P.P.S. – Please check out my podcast at www.RestaurantCateringSmarts.com

P.P.P.P.S. - Anyone wishing to reprint my articles may do so. Please email me for the bi-line to use for proper author’s credits.

Topics: catering, catering software, catering sales, catering marketing, email templates, catering email templates

The #1 Thing Getting In The Way of Selling More Catering

Posted by Michael Attias on Wed, Feb 11, 2015 @ 08:39 AM

Last week I did a webinar with Michael Rosman of The Corporate Caterer. 

The day after, I started calling all of the attendees to thank them for attending and see if they have any follow up questions for me.

I try to practice what I preach. Follow up is one of the little things that goes a long way.

A side benefit of doing follow ups are the tidbits of market research you walk away with. Whether from connecting with customers or employees, this type of feedback yields some big insights.

I noticed a large trend when calling my list of caterers. A large majority of them did not answer their phones. I was sent to their voice mail. 

In my opinion this is the kiss of death. People looking to take care of a catering need want to talk to someone…now!

Back in 1992 while I was building my restaurant, I mystery shopped all of my competitors in the BBQ catering arena. I found myself getting answering machines and line cooks who could only tell me to call back. 

With today’s technologies and services, you should always have a live person answering your calls. 

Even if you must forward and roll over calls to an answering service, prospects feel better getting a voice. The small cost involved is more than paid for with one booking.

You don’t need your answering service to be an expert in your business. They just need to be friendly, position you well and get you the information ASAP. 

For instance…

“I’m sorry. Mr. Attias is meeting with a client right now. Would you mind giving me a few details about your event, and I’ll have him call you as soon as he gets out of the meeting?”

Most consumers understand you may not always get the person in charge of catering sales on the phone immediately, but there is comfort in knowing a live person took your info and will get it to the right person. 

Without a doubt, the phone is the #1 opportunity for most of us to improve and pick up more sales.

How your phone is answered is one of the first impressions I have of you and your company.

I was doing a catering consult last week with a gentleman who owned a successful Italian restaurant. He started telling me why my telephone techniques did not work. He had tried it all with no luck.

Just like the oncologist who tells it to you straight, I don’t believe in blowing smoke up your skirt.

I told him that I thought he was the problem. Based on his phone skills with me, I didn’t think he was the best fit to be talking with prospective clients.

Harsh? Yes! On the mark? Double yes!!

I am not warm and fuzzy on the phone. I want to help you with your problem and get to the next client who needs help.

Luckily, Meredith, Jillian and Nicole make up for that.

Take a good, hard look in the mirror. Would you want to buy from you?

If the answer is no, get out of the way and put someone in who knows how to win people over and sell catering for you!

NOTE MEMBERS: Please check out our members only website, www.RestaurantProfitPoint.com and download a copy of our telephone training manual.       

Well, that’s all for this issue.

To Your Restaurant's Marketing & Catering Success,

Michael Attias

Restaurant Catering Software

P.S. – If you need help growing catering sales, then please go to www.RestaurantCateringSoftware.com and download my free eBook: Cater or Die!

P.P.S. – I make a limited number of time slots available each week for a free Catering Strategy Session with me. (You also get a catering menu critique and free analysis of your website for “Catering Effectiveness”). For complete details and to grab one of the limited spots, please go to:

http://www.restaurantcateringsoftware.com/catering-planning-strategy-session 

P.P.P.S. – Please check out my podcast at www.RestaurantCateringSmarts.com

P.P.P.P.S. - Anyone wishing to reprint my articles may do so. Please email me for the bi-line to use for proper author’s credits.

Topics: catering, catering sales, catering marketing, catering business, catering telephone training

The Anatomy of A Catering Website

Posted by Michael Attias on Tue, Feb 3, 2015 @ 09:57 AM

Growing up in Memphis, my mother would drag my brother, sister and I to Goldsmith’s department store downtown. The first Wednesday of the month was called Clover Day. It was a one day sale that the store used to get rid of returns, overstock and stuff they couldn’t move.

My father taught me to appreciate wrestling, but my mother showed me how it was done. Women would literally grab items out of your hands. My mom could throw elbows and insults with the best of them.

As much fun as Goldsmith’s was, I think the era of the department store is dead.

Retail is now about the specialty store. Containers, kitchenware, hand bags, athletic shoes and hunting gear are a small sampling of the many niched retailers you’ll find.

Marketing your catering is exactly the same.

Many of my clients own restaurants. Catering is the red-headed step child tab on their website, if you can even find that. When I critique websites, I’m usually lucky if I find two generic paragraphs and a PDF catering menu.

For many consumers, your website is their “safe place” to review what you have to offer them. The information on your website should exist to sell them on using you.

Many of my clients have us create Catering Lead Generation Websites for them. They are standalone websites just for their catering profit center. They have their own unique web address and link to it via their main website.

Here are some considerations, when designing your own:

  1. Header: Your header should include some type of benefit statement or a call to action instructing visitors to call you.
  2. Use of prime space: When you go to a website, you see a snapshot of the top part of the homepage. You must scroll down to see the rest. You want to make sure the first thing your visitors see is impactful. Are your tabs clearly marked? Do you have three call to action buttons leading prospects to what you want them to do most? (ie: Online Ordering, Catering Menu, Catering Inquiry Form)
  3. Copy that sells: You can’t use “me too” language on your website. You must tell people what makes you different; fresh food, on time delivery, last minute orders, etc.
  4. Include a catering guarantee. This reverses the risk from a prospective catering client.
  5. What about Frequently Asked Questions? Make a list of all the questions you get asked and the largest objections you hear. Include that on the page.
  6. If you do a lot of corporate catering sales, make sure and have an online ordering interface. Restaurant Catering Systems can give you code that allows you to embed online ordering into your existing website or one we design for you.
  7. Pictures help sell catering. It’s no accident that my most successful clients have invested in great food photography to close deals.
  8. Make sure to include catering inquiry forms throughout your site; preferably one that feeds into your CRM, so you don’t have to re-key information. 

276_Sample_Restaurant_Catering_Systems_Website

This is a great list to use when designing or redesigning your website. We create and manage catering and restaurant websites for our clients. Please let us know if you’re interested.

The internet has become too important of a tool to not have your best marketing representing you. 

Well, that’s all for this issue.

To Your Restaurant's Marketing & Catering Success,

Michael Attias

Restaurant Catering Software

P.S. – If you need help growing catering sales, then please go to www.RestaurantCateringSoftware.com and download my free eBook: Cater or Die!

P.P.S. – I make a limited number of time slots available each week for a free Catering Strategy Session with me. (You also get a catering menu critique and free analysis of your website for “Catering Effectiveness”). For complete details and to grab one of the limited spots, please go to:

http://www.restaurantcateringsoftware.com/catering-planning-strategy-session 

P.P.P.S. – Please check out my podcast at www.RestaurantCateringSmarts.com

P.P.P.P.S. - Anyone wishing to reprint my articles may do so. Please email me for the bi-line to use for proper author’s credits.

Topics: catering, catering software, catering sales, catering marketing, catering websites, catering business

Will The "Big Game" Be Super For Your Catering Business?

Posted by Michael Attias on Mon, Jan 26, 2015 @ 11:11 AM

It doesn’t matter if you’re betting on the Seahawks or the Patriots, you’ll win either way with the right Super Bowl catering strategy.

Technically, you’re not supposed to use the words “Super Bowl”, since it’s trademarked. Most people refer to it as the “Big Game”.

Super Bowl Sunday is one of the biggest party days of the year.

What I’ve observed, is it’s also one of the biggest pot luck party days of the year. I can’t recall one Super Bowl party that I didn’t bring something with me to share. 

I love grazing the tables for a taste of this and nibble of that. When I owned my restaurant, I would bring fried chicken drummies and tamales and chili dip to Super Bowl parties.

I would set aside any promotion of catering packages and push trays and pans of food, as your customers are looking for one thing to bring. 

As opposed to focusing on your catering client database, I would focus on your dining room customers. Hopefully you have an email list to work with. 

By the time you read this, there’ll be less than a week till the big game. That’s plenty of time, as most people will decide at the last minute what dish to bring. 

I would send out one email to your list mid-week and one towards the end of the week. Showcase your best options for items to take to a party; appetizers, sandwich trays, entrée platters, large salad bowls and desserts.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had the good intention to make something for a friend’s party, but opted to pick something up instead. Time gets away from all of us. Make sure you embrace last minute orders.

Were I looking for a subject line for my email, I would use: Are you coming to the Super Bowl Party? 

The right subject line will get people to read your email. Once you get them to open the email, move right into some catchy copy:

…I’m sure you’ve been invited to at least one Super Bowl Party. Are you going?

If the answer is yes, the next question is, “What are you bringing?”

There. I’ve done the hard part for you. Just complete the email with what you have to offer them, along with simple instructions for ordering…like an online ordering link. 

Don’t offer online ordering? Time to ditch the rotary dial phone for a smart phone.

Even though time is getting tight, you still have plenty of time to email your list a few times to generate a few “Big Game” catering orders.

NOTE: New podcast with Frank D’Antona. Just go to www.RestaurantCateringSmarts.com . Make sure and register to receive regular updates.

Well, that’s all for this issue.

To Your Restaurant's Marketing & Catering Success,

Michael Attias

Restaurant Catering Software

P.S. – If you need help growing catering sales, then please go to www.RestaurantCateringSoftware.com and download my free eBook: Cater or Die! 

P.P.S. – I make a limited number of time slots available each week for a free Catering Strategy Session with me. (You also get a catering menu critique and free analysis of your website for “Catering Effectiveness”). For complete details and to grab one of the limited spots, please go to:

http://www.restaurantcateringsoftware.com/catering-planning-strategy-session

P.P.P.S. – Please check out my podcast at www.RestaurantCateringSmarts.com

P.P.P.P.S. - Anyone wishing to reprint my articles may do so. Please email me for the bi-line to use for proper author’s credits.

 

 

Topics: catering, catering software, catering sales, catering marketing, catering business

How To Reach Catering Decision Makers

Posted by Michael Attias on Wed, Jan 21, 2015 @ 11:37 AM

One of the first questions I receive about building catering sales is, “Where do I get a list of catering prospects?”

Now I could write a book on this subject. You can rent or compile your own lists; that’s the short answer. Without a doubt the right “list” makes a difference. It is over fifty percent of the success equation. 

I will cover the long answer in another article.

Let’s discuss the best way to reach catering decision makers.

Once upon a time, getting to the right person was easy. Think back to the early 1900’s. There was no TV, internet or much mass media to distract us. 

If a traveling salesman came by the farm, you welcomed the company and stories.

If Sears & Roebuck mailed you a thousand page catalog, it was your fireside entertainment; dreams of things you wanted and a source for your Christmas wish list.

These days I get five catalogs a week.

Getting through to the catering decision maker takes multiple touch points via multiple strategies.

If I had a dollar for each time someone just wanted to use email. After all, it costs nothing. If “free” doesn’t work, it isn’t free. It’s costly.

I just returned from a marketing conference in Atlanta. Top companies are using multiple touch points: direct mail, telephone, email, social media touches, Google ad words, etc.

In fact, I just made a commitment to launch a new podcast. It is called Restaurant Catering Smarts. I urge you to go to www.RestaurantCateringSmarts.com and register to get updates to new podcasts. You can even check out my first episode.

Show_Artwork_(2)

It’s available on the iTunes store at:

https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/restaurant-catering-smarts/id955916725

If you use Stitcher, you can get it at:

http://www.stitcher.com/s?fid=58980&refid=stpr

Make sure and register at my site to get notified immediately of new shows and get automatic downloads from your podcast service of choice.

Why did I launch a podcast? The world is changing. More people have smart phones and blue tooth. It is so easy to stream a podcast through your car speakers at your convenience. You can listen while you walk or jog. You can listen while waiting in line or at the doctor’s office. You no longer need to be tethered to your car’s audio cd player.

Now back to how to reach catering decision makers.

Create a marketing rhythm. Get in the habit of adding a set number of qualified catering prospects to your funnel each week.

Mail them, call them and visit them.

In RCS, we have a 3 step catering lead generation postcard system. After all three mailers go out, you’re prompted to call them. We are going to build a cookie drop screen. After the first two steps are completed, you’ll see all of your non-responders on a map.

From there, you can group catering prospects to visit after lunch with a cookie drop.

Imagine. As opposed to bringing cookies to all fifty offices in a high rise, you can focus on the four offices who house the companies who actually use catering services on a regular basis.

You can add in email touches and social media touches like LinkedIn and Facebook. Do you think it was a coincidence you received a Facebook feed announcement of my webinar last week?

Marketing excites me. Any time I can provide a tool to help you make more catering sales, I’ll be taking a serious look at adding it.

Well, that’s all for this issue.

To Your Restaurant's Marketing & Catering Success,

Michael Attias

Restaurant Catering Software

P.S. – If you need help growing catering sales, then please go to www.RestaurantCateringSoftware.com and download my free eBook: Cater or Die!

P.P.S. – I make a limited number of time slots available each week for a free Catering Strategy Session with me. (You also get a catering menu critique and free analysis of your website for “Catering Effectiveness”). For complete details and to grab one of the limited spots, please go to:

http://www.restaurantcateringsoftware.com/catering-planning-strategy-session

P.P.P.S. – Anyone wishing to reprint my articles may do so. Please email me for the bi-line to use for proper author’s credits.

 

 

Topics: catering, catering software, catering sales, catering marketing, catering business

The Secret To More Catering Sales In 2015

Posted by Michael Attias on Wed, Jan 7, 2015 @ 09:28 AM

For the sake of argument, I am going to assume you run a good to great operation. People love your food. Your staff is tidy and friendly. Your place is clean. Overall you deliver or over deliver on your value proposition.

This is where you need to be brutally honest with yourself. My favorite saying is, “A pig in a dress is still a pig.”

One of my first travel consulting jobs was over ten years ago to a place in Florida. All of my great marketing advice was a waste. The place was dirty, the food was mediocre and the staff was so, so.

Great marketing accelerates what is already happening.

If you suck, marketing will let more people know quicker that you suck. If you are doing a great job, marketing will speed up your success.

It is very difficult for business owners to look at their “child” and call it ugly.

If your restaurant or catering business is “ugly”, you’d better find yourself a good plastic surgeon and Mary Kay rep and get busy with an extreme makeover.

Now assuming you are ready to go to market, what’s the next step?

Four walls marketing, catering lead generation, cookie drops and niche marketing are all great marketing vehicles…but only if you have the time.

January ushers in a wave of people temporarily motivated to get in shape and lose weight. Health clubs and gyms are counting on record sign ups with a small percentage of clients actually motivated past February 1.

If there is one word you need to use in your 2015 goals it is consistency!

Hitting the gym hard for three weeks will not help you fit into your holiday dress in December. It’s the person who dedicates three workouts a week and gives up soda who will end up in shape.

Marketing your catering is exactly the same. At our December Catering Coaching Call, we had members of all types from newbies to those more experienced with varying degrees of catering sales success.

Newbies aside; the number one difference between the people who hit marketing home runs and those who don’t is consistency in action.

Take Mark Rogers with Smoke and Spice. To the best of my knowledge, he doesn’t have a sales and marketing background. He definitely puts out great food with flair.

What Mark did perfect in the last fourteen months was consistently follow our system. Using the same techniques we share with our members, Mark increased drop off catering sales by over $100,000. This past December was three times busier than the last.

Assuming you can deliver on your promise, the answer to a great 2015 lies within you.

As I coached a newbie who is the general manager of a cupcake store that caters for all sorts of occasions...

Give me an hour per afternoon at least four days a week…week in…week out…

And you will see results.

Simple? Yes.

Will you take action?

If so, then please register for the webinar below.

NOTE: To help you get 2015 headed in the right direction, you are invited to a one time only webinar entitled:

How To Make 2015 Your Best Year with Catering Profits

To grab one of the hundred spots, please click on the link below:

www.FreeCateringWebinar.com

Well, that’s all for this issue.

To Your Restaurant's Marketing & Catering Success,

Michael Attias

Restaurant Catering Software

Topics: catering, catering software, catering sales, catering marketing, catering business

It’s The Most Beautiful Time of the Year

Posted by Michael Attias on Tue, Dec 23, 2014 @ 09:49 AM

I am going to throw PC, political correctness, out the window and just say it, “Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year!” Not Hanukah. Not Kwanza. Not Festivus for the rest of us. Yes. All of these other holidays are just fine and dandy. Look. I’m Jewish. I make a mean potato latke, but let’s face it...Christmas rocks!

Since I was a little kid, this raised Orthodox Jewish kid has loved Christmas.  No. We did not have a Christmas tree, but I soaked up and enjoyed the holiday. My earliest Christmas memory was me at age four going through the enchanted forest in the basement of the downtown Goldsmith’s department store in Memphis and seeing Santa Claus. One year my mom even sprang for breakfast with Saint Nick. The memories were far better than the stale donut and watered down hot chocolate they gave us.

I loved running over to my friends’ homes to see their gifts; enjoying a Christmas treat. The sound of Christmas music, after Thanksgiving, warms my heart. For the few years I was dating/married to my second wife, we celebrated Christmas in the home. I loved seeing the look on McKenna, Jerrod and Jordyn’s face when we surprised them with cell phones (wish I didn’t get them started on cells and texting so young).

The food, music, TV cartoon specials and overall uplifting of the spirits makes this my favorite time of the year! We really could use an extra Christmas come April 15th. My favorite part of the holiday is giving! To see the look on someone’s face when they open “just the right gift” is priceless. The appreciation received from volunteering Christmas morning at a nursing home each year of high school in Memphis so someone could celebrate with their family was great (not to mention the Chinese food and a movie the entire Jewish world enjoys).

The best gift I ever received was on Christmas Eve eight years ago. I was in a very sad place about to get divorced, when I headed into McDonald’s for a quick bite. The lady behind the counter handed me a Christmas card she had purchased out of her pocket. I don’t remember the exact words, but that act touched me deeply. The tears flowed freely for a minute. As I left, I went up to that counter, thanked her for the gift and placed a hundred dollar bill in her hand and wished her a Merry Christmas! She tried to give it back, but I told her she’d do more good with it than me. That definitely was the best gift I’ve ever received...or given.

All this talk about Christmas and gifts is to make a point. This is a time of the year to truly count our blessings. There’s a Persian proverb that sums it up, “I complained of having no shoes, until I met a man with no feet.”

I feel very blessed to have you in my life. Whether it’s to read my blog or entrust me with helping you grow and manage your catering business. Thank you!

Regardless of which holiday(s) you observe, on behalf of everyone at Restaurant Catering Systems, we wish you a wonderful holiday season and a happy, healthy and prosperous new year! We look forward to working with you in the years to come.    

NOTE: To help you get 2015 headed in the right direction, you are invited to a one time only webinar entitled:

How To Make 2015 Your Best Year with Catering Profits

To grab one of the hundred spots, please click on the link below:

www.FreeCateringWebinar.com

Well, that’s all for this issue.

To Your Restaurant's Marketing & Catering Success,

Michael Attias

Restaurant Catering Software

P.S. – If you need help growing catering sales, then please go to www.RestaurantCateringSoftware.com and download my free eBook: Cater or Die!

P.P.S. – I make a limited number of time slots available each week for a free Catering Strategy Session with me. (You also get a catering menu critique and free analysis of your website for “Catering Effectiveness”). For complete details and to grab one of the limited spots, please go to:

http://www.restaurantcateringsoftware.com/catering-planning-strategy-session

P.P.P.S. – Anyone wishing to reprint my articles may do so. Please email me for the bi-line to use for proper author’s credits.

Topics: catering, catering software, catering sales, catering marketing, catering business, catering proposals, catering sample lunches

Givers vs. Takers

Posted by Michael Attias on Tue, Dec 9, 2014 @ 10:55 AM

Whether you are religious and believe in tithing or are a subscriber to the laws of the universe and believe in paying it forward, the concept of giving dates back to the dawn of civilization.

As a kid growing up in Memphis, I had many Christian friends who would tithe. The idea of giving ten percent of your income to charity was mind boggling at the time. 

Seeing my parents struggle through bankruptcy, I saw money as a finite resource not to be squandered. Tithing was as foreign to me as the cast of Star Wars. 

I can’t tell you what caused it or when it happened, but at a certain point in my life my attitude about giving changed. The pie is not limited. If I give you a piece, I’m not a slice down. The world will lead me to a pie twice as large. 

There is no joy or satisfaction in being a taker. There are people who fall on hard times and need a helping hand. But for your sustenance to come via others, when you are able is detrimental. 

There is a sense of accomplishment from doing it yourself. To deny someone that experience is plain wrong. 

I live in an inner city transitional neighborhood. We have everything from soccer moms in Audi’s to SWAT teams raiding my neighbors home(now that was cool to watch).

There is a church that sits across the street from my home. I’ve become friends with Reverend Randy. Though I don’t subscribe to his religion, I am all for what his church stands for and the great community outreach done in our neighborhood.

A few weeks ago he invited me and my family to his church for a Thanksgiving dinner a few nights before the holiday. I asked what he needed.

He was in need of four hundred to go boxes and cutlery kits, as they were going to feed families in our neighborhood. Running out to Sam’s Club to get these supplies was better than any gift I could receive.

The fact my kids volunteered to help serve with zero arm twisting was incredible.

270_Giving_Back_(2)

As corny as it sounds, I am humbled by the fact God/the universe has blessed me with the ability to be a giver. As a kid living in a home going through bankruptcy, I was the recipient of generosity of my friends’ families. From lunch at McDonald’s to a movie, others paid for me.

I did not like the feeling. To this day, I bend over backwards to make sure I’m not on the taking end. 

If you believe the media, all the rich are miserly and do nothing but sit around and count their money.

That is so far from the truth. I have a group of friends who are as successful, if not more so than myself. Each one of them gives back…like my landlord friend who received a call from a tenant saying he couldn’t pay rent in December so his kids could have Christmas.  

As opposed to throwing him out into the cold, he’s deferring rent until his tax refund check comes in.

Or my friend who offered a recently fired single mom a zero interest loan to help her through a rough patch.

And please don’t think the “rich” give for the tax break. Would you give a dollar to save fifty cents in taxes?

Those blessed with abundance understand giving back is part of the package. It’s the unspoken deal you make for success. And they aren’t doing it expecting anything in return.

I have seen this played out so many times, it’s crazy. The vast majority of the “rich” I know get a greater sense from giving back than most anything else.

As 2015 approaches, we can talk about goal setting, focusing on selling more catering and the best marketing strategies, but the best tool I know of is giving back.

As you start to visualize your 2015, picture what your life would be like giving. How would you feel knowing you helped someone out in true need?

What pride would you get from passing on a giving legacy to your children?

Given the choice, we would all prefer to not need to be “takers”.

Moving forward commit to being a giver. Your financial and non-financial payback is infinite!    

Well That’s All For This Issue!

Michael Attias

Restaurant Catering Software 

P.S. – If you need help growing catering sales, then please go to www.RestaurantCateringSoftware.com and download my free eBook: Cater or Die!

P.P.S. – I make a limited number of time slots available each week for a free Catering Strategy Session with me. (You also get a catering menu critique and free analysis of your website for “Catering Effectiveness”). For complete details and to grab one of the limited spots, please go to:

http://www.restaurantcateringsoftware.com/catering-planning-strategy-session

P.P.P.S. – Anyone wishing to reprint my articles may do so. Please email me for the bi-line to use for proper author’s credits.

Topics: catering, catering software, catering sales, catering marketing, catering business

How To Harvest More Catering Clients

Posted by Michael Attias on Thu, Nov 20, 2014 @ 10:10 AM

Last September I bought a new home in East Nashville. East Nashville is just over the river from downtown and is a work in progress.

As soon as an old home is purchased, it is either renovated or torn down to make way for new construction. East Nashville is known as the cool part of Nashville. It is very transitional and the inhabitants are a collage of yuppies, hipsters and low income folk.

I’m not quite sure I fit into one of the categories above, but I love the food scene in East Nashville. Chains are non existent, and the independents are either really good or out of business 

I had looked for years to find my home in East Nashville and was thrilled to find a new construction with a courtyard backyard. I have no patience to rehab and a large backyard without small children is lost on me

My real estate agent turned me on to a great landscape guy who transformed my backyard into a wonderful stone and pebble entertaining area surrounded by planting beds following my fence line. Practically zero maintenance!

Below is a pic of my backyard before I planted.

269_Michael_Backyard

This past spring I took a drive to Bates Nursery to buy flowers, vegetables and herbs for my beds. I learned a few things. Though I love spaghetti squash, I will avoid the takeover of the backyard next summer.

My two favorite things to harvest were berries and tomatoes. I had a solid month of blueberries followed by raspberries. I feel like my tomatoes lasted all summer long.

My tomato plants remind me of marketing.

Every day I went out, watered my tomato plants and picked the weeds. Marketing is pretty much the same. You must consistently tend to your market or target market.

As it relates to catering, you must consistently use four walls marketing, cookie drops, trade shows, bridal shows, lead generation mail, client newsletters, email newsletters, birthday clubs, loyalty and referral programs, niche mailings, telephone follow up and tastings to get catering clients and repeat events.

When the day came that my gardening paid off with my first few tomatoes, I couldn’t stop watering the plants or picking the weeds. The day I cut off the supply to that plant, the tomatoes would cease.

Marketing works exactly the same way. Your catering business may not shrivel up today should you cease marketing, but soon it would.

Dan Kennedy, one of my marketing mentors, makes sure he does at least one marketing activity a day. Even if it’s sending a single fax, he won’t end his day without some type of marketing.

Recently I had dinner with my friends Jay and Terry Siff from Moving Targets. Jay and Terry met at the gym and are both are into their health. I asked Jay if he enjoyed lifting weights. He admitted he didn’t, but he knew he needed to do it.

For me marketing is a joy. I love for the next marketing campaign or challenge.

Winners do what they need to do, not just what they want to do.

Whether it’s you or a key person, marketing must be a consistent activity in your restaurant catering business. People ask me what’s the one thing you did to build a million dollar a year catering business.

There is no “one” or silver bullet. It’s the piling on of a million little things that lead to large sales.

Please don’t forget marketing is far more than a sales letter or cookie drop. Marketing is the impact of small impressions on your prospect: staff, uniform, hygiene, punctuality, phone skills, etc.

From my 30,000 foot high overview of what it takes to harvest more catering, this all sounds daunting and overwhelming.

The road to a million dollars a year in catering sales starts with one action. Decide today you will focus on one initiative for thirty days. At the end of that thirty days add another marketing initiative to your plate. Before long you’ll be harvesting bushels of “catering tomatoes”.

Well That’s All For This Issue!

 Michael Attias

Restaurant Catering Software

P.S. – If you need help growing catering sales, then please go to www.RestaurantCateringSoftware.com and download my free eBook: Cater or Die!

P.P.S. – I make a limited number of time slots available each week for a free Catering Strategy Session with me. (You also get a catering menu critique and free analysis of your website for “Catering Effectiveness”). For complete details and to grab one of the limited spots, please go to:

http://www.restaurantcateringsoftware.com/catering-planning-strategy-session

P.P.P.S. – Anyone wishing to reprint my articles may do so. Please email me for the bi-line to use for proper author’s credits.

Topics: catering, catering software, catering sales, catering marketing, catering business

free-online-demo

full-feature-set

Follow Me

Subscribe via E-mail