So Your Kid Got An ‘A’ In Art? Great, But That Doesn’t Qualify Them To Make Your Menu.

iStock_boy:backpack000006349432MediumNephew art (My Kid Art?) can be gratifying, but it can’t make you a ton of money. At least not like a professionally design-engineered menu can. And while your child or server, or wife, friend, significant other may be really good a drawing, a menu is a very complicated selling tool. So unless they have been design-engineering menus for a long time, it’s not a great idea to put your business in their hands (or watercolors).


Instead, give HotOperator a call now (you don’t even have to tell them) and hire their menu-marketing engineers to create a menu exclusively for your restaurant. You’ll make a lot more money, and you’ll feel much more comfortable knowing that your menu was worked on by professionals. Call 1-800-316-3198 or contact the restaurant marketing experts through their website here.

4 Reasons Foodservice Distributors Make Poor Menu Design Partners

1 – They want your food business (as much of it as they can get). To your distributor, your restaurant menu is just another way to get the food business. And if they can leverage a little of their administrative staff to get it, they will. But this doesn’t make them experts in menu design engineering, so when a foodservice distributor makes a restaurant menu for you, their primary reason for doing so is to lock up the food business.


2 – It’s a conflict of interest. Your foodservice distributor has a list of food items they want to sell, through your restaurant. These are items that make them a lot more money than others, and those items are the very items that they will promote on your restaurant menu. It’s not that they don’t know how to engineer a menu, it’s that they are at cross-purposes with you and your restaurant business. So not only do you have to manage the process of your own menu design engineering, you also have to keep a watchful eye on which items your foodservice distributor wants to promote.


3 – They have an unfair advantage. Your restaurant distributor knows more about your food and supply purchases than you do. They monitor what you buy, pay attention to the prices you pay and which items you watch most closely. And there are reasons they make you agree to buy a certain percentage of your food purchases from them in exchange for a menu. They know they’ll make it back in increased prices and guaranteed volume.


4 – They don’t live or die by your menu. Unlike a professional Menu Engineering and Design company, your foodservice distributor isn’t that tied to the success of your menu. So their interest in giving you objective advice is less important than getting your menu out the door.


When you’re ready to take back control of your purchases, give HotOperator a call. You’ll get a professional menu and objective advice on how best to menu market your business. Call 1-800-316-3198, or visit the HotOperator website here.

3 Things That Might Surprise You About Restaurant Menu Scatter Graphs

Happy Chef

1 – Most Restaurant Operators don’t know what they’re selling most of the time. And what’s worse, they think they do. Most restaurant operators think they have a great hold on what sells because they see it go out the door. But what they don’t realize is, most of what they see is just rationalizing what they already think. The only way to know for sure what’s working in your restaurant is to create a menu scatter graph.


2 – A Restaurant Menu Matrix will always have Dogs in them. By nature of how a Restaurant Menu Matrix is created, some of the items on the menu will look like dogs. So the job of a Restaurant Menu Matrix is not to get rid of the dogs, but to better understand which items can be come stars, and how to enhance those items as much as possible.


3 – Most Restaurant Operators give way to much credit to Cash Cows. A Cash Cow in a restaurant is an item with high popularity and low profits. And we understand why that is, these items sell well, too well, in fact. And as a restaurant manager it’s your job to find ways to get people to buy the items that make the most sense for your restaurant.


You need help with your Restaurant Menu Matrix and Scatter Graph, even though you probably don’t want to admit it. Give HotOperator a call and hire them to run through this extremely important process with your restaurant. Call 1 800-316-3198, or contact the restaurant menu experts through their web site here.

5 Things You Probably Don’t Know About Restaurant Menu Highlighting

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1 – Restaurant Menu Product Highlights can work to slow the sale of a product if you’re not careful. HotOperator research shows that there are actually very few menu highlights that actually increase the sales velocity of a product on a restaurant menu. Not knowing how highlights work best can cost you in the long run.


2 – Restaurant Product Positioning will enhance your highlights, but only if you know what to look for. Restaurant eye movement charts are impacted by highlights, and so are menu sales and profits. Getting this part wrong can make dogs out of stars.



3 – Knowing which Restaurant Products to Highlight on a Restaurant Menu is very important. It’s not just about popularity, but instead, you want to focus on items that can become stars over time.


4 – Highlighting an Inconsistent Restaurant Menu Product will kill it quicker. Once a Restaurant Menu is properly highlighted, people will try those highlighted items more often. If the product is inconsistent or poorly made, it will drop off in sales very quickly.


5 – Restaurant Menu Highlights are not stronger than your serving staff. If you highlight a product you want to sell more of and your wait staff doesn’t like the item, it will never sell well.


Call HotOperator and hire them to review your menu. Call 1 800-316-3198 now, or contact them through their website, which can be found here.

5 Reasons Why None Of Your Wait Staff Make Good Menu Designers


Webber's Before Menu

Webber's Before Menu


Webber's After Menu

Webber's After Men


1 – Saving Money Just To Loose More. You think you’re saving money by having someone on your wait staff work on your menu, but you’re actually costing yourself thousands of dollars in lost revenue because they are not menu engineers with experience in helping you create a great menu that will enhance your brand and grow your business (if they were, they would be doing that for a living instead of slinging hash).


2 – A Few Years of Schooling in Computers Does Not Make You a Designer. In fact, it takes years of work experience working with restaurant menu design engineering to master the process. But you already know this, because you don’t just take a buss person and put them on your cooking line. And it’s the same with your restaurant menu, which is just as important (and statistically more important than) your food.


3 – Better Writing, Better Experience. Writing A Restaurant Menu is as much a skill as designing a Restaurant Menu. Food product descriptions need to entice, convince and inspire. Not an easy task, and not to be hacked together by just anyone.


4 – First Impressions. Your restaurant menu is the first line of communication for your restaurant brand. You can never the chance for a great first impression back. This first impression can have a huge impact on how your guests perceive your food; it’s taste and their likeliness to return. Taking a chance on a part time person with that much power is dangerous to your business.


5 – Finding Hidden Money. A menu is a very specialized catalog that can be the pivot point in your restaurant marketing. It’s easy to think that anyone can make a product list, and that’s true. It doesn’t take much experience to put a bunch of products into a list. But if you are smart, you’ll want a menu that is designed to build your restaurant and enhance your brand.


When you’re ready to elevate your brand, give HotOperator a call. The menu design and engineering experts at HotOperator can build you a better, more product menu that will help you make more profits day in and day out. Call 1-800-316-3198 or contact them through the HotOperator website here.

Professional Restaurant Menu Design Engineering From HotOperator

The science of our professional menu design and engineering systems is what we call PHAN: Positioning, Highlighting, Anchoring, and Numbers.

1. Positioning.
Eye movement and menus have been studied for decades. At HotOperator, we use the latest techniques to make sure we position your best items in the hottest spots on the menu. Just as your restaurant is all about location, so too are the items on your menu.

2. Highlighting.
When you were in school, and you got the teacher's book and she had some stuff highlighted, did you pay attention? It's the same for the customers in your restaurant. When a patron comes in to your restaurant, he or she is trying to decide what's good to eat at your restaurant. We help by calling attention to certain items over others.

3. Anchoring.
The one time a person is most likely to purchase the most expensive item on a restaurant menu is the day he or she buys a house. The thinking is: "I'm already hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt," so that makes everything on the menu seem inexpensive by comparison. One of our techniques for helping your customers get over their price blocks is by using simple comparisons.

4. Numbers.
There is a lot of research that shows consumer behavior doesn't change unless there is a noticeable effect on price. So $5.29 and $5.49 is essentially the same number to a consumer. Knowing that, we can help you price your menu for maximum plate contribution without upsetting the delicate balance with consumer behavior.

There is a lot that we can do to enhance your menu. Most important from your perspective is the reassurance of knowing that our staff is all trained in these techniques and ready to help you grow your business.

Two Ways to Grow Your Business
There are only two ways to grow a business. One way is to get your current customers to buy more and more often. The other way is to get more customers. HotOperator offers programs to help you do both. Our system is unique in that we start with the engineering process to build your menu and increase foot traffic. We're the only company using your most important information as the basis for building your brand story.

Your Best Five:
Once the menu-engineering is complete, you'll have a better understanding of the items that provide the best plate contribution. HotOperator recommends developing your own point-of-purchase materials to enhance the sale of these important offerings. We'll help you choose your best appetizer, three or four entrées, and a couple of desserts to put on table talkers. These materials can be coordinated to match your brand essence and will stimulate purchase. (Samples)

HotOperator is a menu-engineering and design team that was built out of an advertising agency. Our credentials include more than 20 years of experience building traffic for restaurants, manufacturers, and distributors.

HotOperator Professional Restaurant Menu Design & Engineering 1-800-316-3198

HotOperator Professional Restaurant Menu Design & Engineering 1-800-316-3198