800-316-3198 [email protected]

Sometimes A Mental Anchor Point Starts Selling

HotOperator corroborated with Parkway Tavern in New Orleans on a new carryout menu for their restaurant. Jay Nix and Justin Kennedy wanted the new menu to better represent their iconic restaurant which has been making Poor Boy sandwiches sing 1911. They didn’t invent the Poor Boy. But they were making them within a year of their creation by Bennie and Clovis Martin during the street car strike in 1929.

Legend has it, Clovis was trying to figure out what to feed these ‘poor boy’s’ who worked the street cars and wouldn’t be able to afford lunch. Her solution was a potato and gravy ‘Poor Boy’ sandwich. Parkway is the only place left in New Orleans that still makes the sandwiches the same today as they did back 1929.

Mental Anchoring For Fun & Profits

If you know anything about how HotOperator approaches menu engineering, we’re always in search of creative ways to help our restaurant  customers keep their prices in perspective. One way we do that is with Mental Anchor Points. This is an item we usually invent that has an unusually high price to make other items look cheaper by comparison. So we’re not always concerned if the mental anchor items don’t sell. As long as they do their job of making other, high contribution items sell more frequently.

In the case of Parkway Tavern, we came up the Bayou Beast, and convinced Jay and Justin to add it to their menu. This Poor Boy Monster is as big and bad as it gets. Nearly 3 feet of French bread stacked with layers of bbq beef, fried shrimp and alligator sausage topped with melted pepper jack cheese. Don’t try to eat this one alone! Bring a team of hungry friends!

The thing is, it started to sell. Not a lot at first, but once people started to see it, they wanted one.

Justin came to us a little while after the launch of the new menu and asked us for a packaging design for The Bayou Beast. Customers wanted to order them for parties and events. The Bayou Beast is an example of a HotOperator Mental Anchor Point that sells. And the best part is, it’s memorable, and only available at Parkway Mark & Kelly LauxTavern in New Orleans. If you head out and run into either Jay or Justin, tell them Mark at HotOperator sent you!

are a design-engineer team and managing partners of HotOperator. They have been working in the restaurant business since 1989. Either can be contacted through the HotOperator website, or by calling 800-316-3198.

HotOperator services include Menu Design & Engineering, Social Media, Restaurant Consulting, Classic Advertising, Brand Marketing and New Product Development.