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March 12, 2012
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On the Front Burner 
Restaurant News 
  • McDonald's turns its hands to breakfast baking
    McDonald's is testing new baked goods in the New England market as part of push to grab more morning and snack-time market share from rival Dunkin' Donuts. The stores will officially begin promoting the new cheese danish, muffins, banana bread and vanilla scones today; unlike the rest of the breakfast menu, the baked goods will be available throughout the day. The Boston Globe (tiered subscription model) (3/10) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
  • Other News
Leading Voices 
  • 3 steps to boost the reach of your social media efforts
    Building it won't guarantee they'll come when it comes to your Facebook pages, Twitter feeds and other social media platforms, writes Sociallybuzz CEO Andre Kay. Brick-and-mortar businesses including restaurants need to manage their brands on a wide variety of platforms including Yelp and Foursquare, writes Kay, who offers three tips for driving more customers to interact with your brand in the social sphere. SmartBrief/SmartBlog on Food & Beverage (3/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
  • Location likely to determine restaurants' convention success
    Tampa Bay, Fla.-area restaurateurs eagerly await the influx of visitors slated to arrive for the Republican National Convention this summer, but a boon for some may be a bust for others. Eateries near busy hotels are likely to do well, while those too close to the convention center should expect security perimeters to stifle business, say restaurant owners and journalists who lived through the Twin Cities convention four years ago. Tampa Bay Times (St. Petersburg, Fla.) (3/11) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
  • How Chipotle keeps its marketing budget lean
    Unlike quickservice chains of its size, fast-casual burrito player Chipotle has grown without national TV ads -- the chain ran its first one, a two-minute spot focused on sustainable farming, during the Grammy Awards. The company doesn't plan to shift gears to pricier paid media anytime soon, said CMO Mark Crumpacker, who has kept the marketing budget lean since joining the company in 2009. Advertising Age (tiered subscription model) (3/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
  • Buffalo Wild Wings hopes iPads boost sales
    Buffalo Wild Wings is one of a growing number of chains and independent eateries testing on-the-table iPads for ordering, paying and online game playing, aiming not only to generate buzz among gadget fans and free up waitstaff, but also to boost sales. The company expects about 20% of checks to run slightly higher when guests have the option of choosing when to order more appetizers, a second round of drinks and dessert, said executive Ben Nelsen. Star Tribune (Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minn.) (3/10) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
Street Smarts 
Culinary Spotlight 
  • 3 sushi chains seek success with fast-casual model
    Three new Southern California sushi concepts are betting on an assembly-line model similar to Chipotle's, which lets guests customize their meals every step of the way, to expand the cuisine from independently owned sushi bars to fast-casual chains. "You can already customize your computer, your car, your coffee -- why not your sushi?" said Jen Duarte, co-founder of San Diego-based SushiFreak. Chicago Tribune (3/10)
Hot Topics 

Top five news stories selected by Restaurant SmartBrief readers in the past week.

McDonald's makes changes to value menu (Reuters)
The 50 best Chinese restaurants in the U.S. ( (Asia))
McDonald's to serve Happy Meal ads with a focus on nutrition (Advertising Age (tiered subscription model))
Cosi CEO sees streamlining ahead (
Panera to boost ad spend amid growing fast-casual rivalry (The Wall Street Journal)
Results based on number of times each story was clicked by readers.
Featured Content 
Most Popular Headlines from Last Week
Results based on number of times each story was clicked by readers.

Movers & Shakers 
Position TitleCompany NameLocation
Multi-Unit Director of OperationsLegal Sea FoodsBoston, MA
Restaurant/Beverage ManagerThink Food GroupWashington, DC
Click here to view more job listings.

Food for Thought 
Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does."
--William James,
American psychologist and philosopher

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