Restaurant Success Quiz Follow Up
Hi there, I just wanted to say thank you for filling in the questionnaire. And congratulations as well for taking time to do it, it's really great to see that you're investing some time in growing your business in these troubled times.
The reason for me giving you feedback like this is that I do want to help. I love this industry and worked in it for about 18 years and helped thousands of people, thousands of restaurant owners to increase their profits. And right now we're going through an incredibly tough time. And I don't think it's going to get easier. As soon as job keeper finishes, I think we'll go through another really tough time. Because from what I understand, there's a lot of people just hanging in there, hoping things are going to get better, and relying on job keeper. So I think once that goes, it will see the end of a lot more restaurants.
So hopefully, you're not one of them. Because you've taken action and actually done the quiz and started to look at what easy is going to help you to make your restaurant more profitable, that you're one of those people that are going to take action.
So this conversation between me and you is all about that, what is it that you can do? What is it that I've seen over the last 18 years of working in this and the amount of people that I've worked with and seeing their businesses and help them with their marketing? What is it that I can help you to do and to understand so that you can be successful too. So I want to look at different areas of of running a restaurant business.
And those areas were reflected in the survey. And one of the first things that I did in the survey was thinking about mindset.
And the first several questions and some at the end actually were about mindset. And what I mean by mindset is, the way that you think about yourself, it’s the way that you think about the business, it's the way that you think about the people in the business. And it's the way that you think about systems and processes and events happening outside of your control the way you think about that, and the way that you respond to it.
So your mindset basically either comes from a position of responsibility, I am responsible for what I create in this world, or a position of victimhood, where you think that is all to do with someone else, or the conditions. And it’s what's really important, I see the people that make the biggest success in life in business, and particularly in our industry, is those people that take personal responsibility and make things happen for themselves. So that's a position that I come from, and I hope that that's that position for you. We all slip into victim mode, every now and again, it's just the way that we are, we would really like if somebody else would do all the work for us and take care of us. But that's not going to happen. And you know, as a business owner, that's not going to happen.
So what I want to talk about is, is looking at that mindset piece first. So let's do that. So one of the questions that I asked towards the end was how happy are you with your business growth, and it was a one to five, I don't know where you specifically scored on that one to five. If it's five out of five, you know, you're really happy. Either that is an ego answer. That's what you'd like us to believe or me to believe or even maybe you'd like you to believe… or it means you're absolutely smashing it. Very, very confident for the future, you know, you're going to smash it in the future. And you're a very unique individual, particularly in this period of time in the world.
If you answer down at one that you're not happy there's actually a really positive thing about that that you're not happy with your progress… because it puts you in a position of saying Okay, so this is not working What can I do differently?
So wherever you scored on that really look at is that the truth see, so what I really feel that I am really happy or I'm not really happy, where do I score on that and, and see as a positive an opportunity to go you know what we could do different we could do better? Where is that? Then we can do better? really analyze yourself, your team, what you're doing, to do more? And this the same one with the question about confidence, confidence, how confident are you that you could survive this
One of the things that one of my coaching members said the other day, when I asked her what difference it made coming into coaching, she said to me that they are really confident now they know that they can run their business, and they're doing great even now in the middle of COVID. And that they are confident because they know what to do.
Before they started working with us, which is four years ago, they would have gone out of business by now. And particularly through COVID, they would not have known what to do. So confidence comes from knowing what to do and how to react in any circumstances around your business. And that doesn't mean that you've got to have all the answers, they certainly didn't. And what I did was invite them to come regularly, three times a week, we were running coaching calls at the start of COVID. Come to those calls, which they did every single day, and they were in WA. So that means that they're two hours behind us and we're doing those calls at nine in the morning, and they were getting up to get to those calls at seven in the morning, in order to come to those calls.
And that's a sense of responsibility, they knew I was there to help them. And they were willing to come on those calls. But it wasn't all me, I don't want to take all the credit for this, there were lots of other coaching members that came on those calls and shared with each other, the group shared with each other, what was working, what wasn't working, so that together, they could come up with solutions. And I just facilitated that process and obviously added my ideas as well.
So being confident is really important. And you know, finding a group that you can associate with, that's going to share successes with you… Don't spend time with people that are going to pull you down. Don't spend time with people that are negative, because they'll fill your mind with that. And it's so easy to get poisoned with negativity, and then you'll give up.
So find some positive people around you that are not going to whinge about the way things are, but are going to say, Come on, what can we do about it? How can I help you? How can you help me, somebody that's really got that mindset of like making things happen?
So that's increasing your confidence. And then the first question in the questionnaire was, do you want to increase your profits? And a hell of a lot of you said, Yes. So my answer to that is, Do you really? Are you willing to do what it takes?
You know, it could be that you would like them to improve? But do you really want them to improve? And if you say, Yes, I really want them to improve, then you can't do the same things that you've been doing before. Because if you did, if you say you want them to improve, then what you've done up until now hasn't worked, then you can’t do more of that. But if you're only willing to do the same as you were doing before that line is just going to carry on the same. And yes, I know that COVID has changed the game.
But my clients, the people that I'm working with, some of them are doing 200%. So double what they were doing pre COVID, one of them is doing 300%, three times the revenue that it was making pre COVID. And because a lot of these costs have gone down the staff costs, he's got a job keep going on, he's making a hell of a lot more profit in his pocket, because he's making three times the revenue as well. And he's just changed the way he does business is just changed the way that the products he does the services that he does, and his marketing now to his local community. And he's making three times the money he was making before.
So when I say to you, do you want to increase your profits? And you say, yes, I do I want my profits to increase. The thing that I would want to know is, are you willing to take responsibility? You know, no bullshit, let's get that out of the way, are you willing to do what it takes in order to make that happen?
And if you are willing, then great, you can do it. And I'm going to talk about some of the things that you need to do in order to increase your profits. If you are not willing to do what it takes, then basically, it's not going to happen, you're not going to find a white knight that's going to charge into the restaurant and take over from you, your staff. If they are doing what they're called to do, they're not going to step up and suddenly become a leader that you can follow to make your business grow. And if that makes you uncomfortable, well, I'm sorry, but it's the truth. You know, like I said, Let's get the bullshit out of the way. This is about you taking responsibility to grow your business.
It's not going to happen, elsewise, nobody's going to come in and do it for you, unfortunately.
But if you're still here, great, you're the kind of person that I want to support. So if you really want to increase your profits, do you have plans written down, and you might have plans in your head, but honestly, people that want to grow their businesses have a plan of what they want to see happen.
You know, my clients have plans of how much they want to grow their database, how much they want to grow their revenue, how many special events they're going to put on in the year, if they are promoting a particular dish, how many dishes they want to sell. So they have a lot of things written down. So it can be a marketing plan, or it can be a business plan. And that's not a business plan to show the bank manager, this is a business plan for you. So that you can look month by month what you are doing. One of the great things that that we do offer is an account manager.
So my clients have somebody to talk to so at the end of the call, the account manager will say, Okay, what are we doing over the next six weeks, let's get some notes down. And then she made sure that people do what they say, you know, having some accountability there. And again, I'm not trying to sell you when you're working with us get an accountability, buddy. Don't make it a friend, don't make it a family member, don't make it somebody in the business who you have power over. because somebody's got to call you to account.
So it's got to be someone like a colleague, someone else to owns another business, where you say, Okay, I'm going to get x done by next Monday, and they call you on it? Did you get x done? Why not? You said you're going to do it, you know what's going on, and maybe quitting on yourself. You know, you need somebody who's got the gravitas to be able to say that to you, your partner is not going to do that your husband or your wife is not going to do that because they don't want to upset you. And staff are not going to do that because they're scared of your power. So you've got to find somebody who can ask you those questions. So that you get things done.
So have your plans written down and get yourself an accountability buddy, or an account manager that's going to hold you to an account on that.
I asked if you're frustrated, and there's a bit of a trick question. Are you frustrated with the outcome you're getting? And some people said no, oh, well, if you're not frustrated, then you must be happy with what you're getting. But the ego likes to show off, Oh, no, I'm in control. The truth of the matter is you need to be frustrated, unless you're smashing it absolutely smashing it. There needs to be some frustration or else you won't grow. There's got to be some “away from”… I want to move away from this frustration. It's one thing to have goals to move towards. I want a new car, I want to pay off this debt. I want to go on holiday. It's great to have towards goals. But unless you're frustrated about what's going on right now, chances are those you'll never achieve those goals. Because there's nothing pushing you forward. So you'll stay where you are. So the question, Are you frustrated was a bit of a trick question. I was looking for people to say yes I am. Because then there's a bit of a fire underneath them. And they want to improve.
So the question that all around mindset we've not moved from mindset yet is are you willing to do what it takes in order to change? And if the answer's yes, great, because now we're going to talk about market.
And so the first thing is… are you marketing? When I started Restaurant Profits, like I said about 18 years ago, we used to talk about marketing, and no restaurant owner claimed they were a marketer. Back in those days. Some of them thought by having a yellow pages ad, and maybe doing some letterbox drops. They were doing marketing and that's okay, I get that. But these days, if you put a photograph on Facebook, you can say I am doing marketing. The truth of the matter is, from my perspective, you're not because marketing to me is about two things, it's about psychology, and it's about math. Psychology, is about getting people to change their behavior, so that they do something that you guys want them to do which is to come into your restaurant but maths is just as important, because you need to know how many came in how much you spent on the promotion how much money came in as a result of that promotion? And did you make a return on the investment or did you lose money by doing that promotion. A lot of people are doing things and paying for you know influencers and people to do their Instagram for them and they don't know if it's working they don't know if there's money in the till. Somebody can show you how many likes you're getting on something, but I tell you what, go to the bank manager and ask if you can pay your bills with likes. What you need to do is to be able to, one, influence people with the psychology of your marketing and then number two be able to show a return on investment I spent $10 and this brought $100 in or I spent $1,000 and this brought $10,000 in or $20,000 in so you need to have that psychology and maths in order to say yes, I am a marketer. So marketing is not just posting things on Facebook and Instagram and getting likes, it's about being able to do that. And then see that translate into people booking seats, and then also the money in the till.
So how do you track your results? And do you track your results, and if you don't track your results, then you don't know whether your marketing's working or not. And there's that old saying, from many years ago, from an entrepreneur in America, 50% of my marketing is working, I just wish I knew which 50% and that's the thing, you've got to be able to tell where to invest your money and where to not. And if you don't know what's working, you can't do that.
The other interesting statistic is the 80/20 rule. And what we see, because we track tons of marketing is that 80% of results come from 20% of what's done. So 80% of the money that our clients make come from 20% of their behaviors. So we look at… Well, what is that 20%, and let's expand that, let's put more money into that, let's stop doing the things that are not working, put more money into what is working, and then obviously, that's going to make a lot more money for them.
So one of the things that we do is, we do a lot of repeat business marketing. And we know from research that that's where the money is made. So you probably heard that getting a repeat customer is five times cheaper than a new customer yet, if I was to talk to you about what marketing you were doing, you probably tell me that you were doing things on Facebook, and so on. And if I was to say, you know, what outcome Did you want, when you posted that picture of that day, shout out meal or whatever, truthfully, is probably about getting new people in, it's about getting more bums on seats, but it's new people. So it's new business marketing. And yet the real money is in repeat business marketing.
There's four ways that you can grow your business through marketing,
• Number one is new business.
• Number two is repeat business.
• Number three is increasing spend per head.
• And number four is increasing prices.
Now, you've got to do new business marketing, you've got to get people in. But that's not where you put all of your money. In fact, new business marketing is, to me is a way of building a database, bringing new people onto your database so that you can turn those new people into prospects to get repeat business from because all the money that you'll make in business is from repeat business, not from new business. You spend so much to get somebody through the door, and the net profit is not so much you know, in our industry, the first time they visit, you probably lose money, whether you realize it or not, or make very, very little money from the first time they visit. Where you make the real money is their second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh visits from you then you can also get them to bring their friends, their families to celebrate occasion. So that repeat business marketing is where you make the most of your money.
So a question that was in the survey is what kind of market do you do? And how much repeat business marketing that you do? And if you truthfully answered that you don't do much repeat business marketing, then that's a fantastic place to spend some time thinking, you know, how can we create this database? What can we do to get them back in? And that's what we do with our clients. We spend the vast majority of time building new business marketing to turn it into a database and then repeat business market and to make them a lot of money.
The biggest thing that you can do is a birthday club. And in the questions I asked, Are you generous to people on their birthdays, and anniversaries? The reason I asked that is that I know that that is where tons and tons of money lies. So if you are generous, you offer somebody a free meal on their birthday or something like that, of course you put conditions around that so it's not somebody coming in and and just eating and leaving. That's where they'll bring their partner that's where they'll bring their family that's where they'll bring their extended family that's where they'll bring their mates. You could get a table of 40 from giving away a free Main.
We have seen somebody give away a Vegetable Gnocchi and that brought in 40 people. The birthday girl, only wanted a Vegetable Gnocchi but brought 40 friends with her. And that's the sort of thing you can experience when you're generous to people. She probably thought it was lovely that she got her meal for free on a birthday. But the truth of the matter is it cost next to nothing to make. I mean Gnocchi is cheap and vegetables are fairly cheap. So it probably costs I don't know $5 and they brought for 40 people in with them.
So that's just one example, people bring in twos and fours and sixes and so on, I have one client that's made over $5 million, just from doing a birthday club over the years. So birthdays, being generous on people's birthdays, their wedding anniversaries, and so on. But in order to do that, you; number one, have to have a database, which has their first name, their last name, their email, their mobile, and their date of birth. And taking it to the next level, which we do, is you get their postal address, and you get their wedding anniversary, if they're married, or if they have some other kind of ceremony where they are a couple, and there's an anniversary around that to celebrate that them as well. So that's a great database.
So a lot of what we do with our clients is growing that so I'm suggesting, again, I don't not trying to sell you to work with us, what I'm telling you is the insider secrets about how we do it, so you can do it for yourself. So you need a database, like a central place where you keep all of that information. So a database is not. I've got Facebook followers and Instagram followers and people are watching me on tik tok, it's not about you got to get that data off of those channels, and into a repository. And we use an email program for all of our clients same email program, and we handle about 1.3 million people's data. Last time I looked on behalf of all of our clients, they it's not cross pollinating, they only get to market to each of their own data altogether, about 1.3 million. And basically, we grow that we help them to grow it, I got one client, they swapped around 100,000, I've got another client, she's gone from zero to 20,000 people on their data base most people around about 5 – 6 - 7 thousand on their database.
And one place where we can get that data is social media marketing, we've already talked about it's not just about posting photographs, what we do there is post things that gets people to respond by giving us their data, which we then put to a database. So they see something on Facebook, they want to claim it, they'll give us their name, their email, their birthday, so on. And then we put it in the database, we give them something back for that, and then we invite them in on their birthday. So again, behind the scenes, that's what we do, there's a strategy for you. So from my perspective, repeat business market is king.
This means that you have to have the mindset that this is what we're going to do now, I'm not here, as a restaurant owner, to make great food, what I'm here to do is to step back a step and make sure that I can build a database, I can have marketing, bringing that in, I can run a birthday club, and then beyond that, I can manage all of those things working so that my profits can grow.
And if you say, I don't have time for that, then really, you're not coming from that place responsibility, you've got to take time out to do that you've got to delegate other things. So one hour a day, maybe 30 minutes a day, I don't know, you're going to be working on the business, that's you taking responsibility for growing your profits. Yes, you can outsource that to other people. But if you outsource it, you've got to manage it, you've got to make sure that those people are doing what it is that you want to do.
So, you know, growing a database is massive. And if you said yeah, we've got a database, well, what are you doing to grow it. And if your database is likes, or just an email address, then it's not really a database, it needs to be more than you need to be using booking systems that will give you the data. So that you can can have that data to work with. And the only system I know that actually gives you the data is now book it. There might be others out there, but I don't know them. And certainly not the fork, certainly not open table. Certainly not menu log and the likes.
That they keep the data and it's not yours. So you can ask for it if you like and some of them might give you it but now book it will give you it immediately. It's yours, it's pumped in your system, you can connect it to now you can connect to a database system, and it just pushes it straight in there. And I am not on a sales commission from them. I'm just telling you, again, things that we do for our clients. So that's a way of growing your database every time somebody makes a booking.
People are going to want to do fun events and experiences and that is where I was asking about what do you do to WOW people? So some people said yeah, we WOW people every time. So again, do you really I mean think about the last time you went out somewhere, maybe pre COVID. And you had a meal anywhere and thought Wow, that's amazing. I'm going to promote these people to my friends, I'm going to put them on Facebook, I am going to thank them for what they've done. I'm definitely going to book in and come again. Because that was amazing. Think about the last time that happened for you. And what was it that that place? Did? You know, what was it that made it you go, Wow, I've got to do all of these things. Because that's amazing.
And the thing is… How many times are you and your staff doing that? For every single person that comes through? You know, is every person promoting you? Is every person thanking you for what you've done? Is every person repeat booking? Because you create such a Wow, in their lives? The truth of the matter is probably no.
Okay, so we have a sliding scale of that was okay, nice meal right through to Wow, it blew my socks off. I worked with Dan MacKinnon and Mandy from Cottage Point Inn which had two hats. They owned it for 25 years. And I worked with them for six months to understand what they were doing to WOW people and how they were getting people to spend massively at that place. And let me tell you, every little thing, every pinpoint of behavior in that restaurant was mapped out, it was trained, it was retrained, people were drilled and skilled and tested on all sorts of things, how they approached the table, what they said at the table, all those kinds of things and then Dan and Mandy they knew that if they weren't there that behavior would go ahead.
And of course, if Dan and Mandy took their eye off the ball for too long, people would go back to not doing it. So there was management systems as well. But they were able to increase spend sometimes by 100%. So suddenly, we expected to spend $200, they'd be spending $400 on that meal. And the people walked away delight in because they were treated to a WOW experience every time. And how do we know it was happening? Basically, we could see it on the internet, we could see people going, WOW, this is amazing. Look at this photograph, look at this food. It would be things like they would name things in in testimonials that we knew, the Staff had said. So they would repeat what the staff had said. And we knew that that was part of kind of scripting, if you like, but it wasn't the script of what was being said at the table. So we knew it was working. How do you know it's working?
If you said you were giving people a WOW experience? Well, how do you know it's working? How are you tracking that. And if you didn't say you were getting a WOW, then there's a fantastic place to look at doing some training with your staff. And I did ask if you train your staff, and a lot of people don't want to do it, because they don't want to pay for their staff to be trained. And the problem with that is, if you don't get them to do what you want them to do, through training, they're going to do what they want to do. Or maybe even worse, they're going to bring the habits from another restaurant, into your restaurant. And remember, they left the restaurant because they didn't like working there. So training your staff is very important. And I know it's a cost. But there's a massive cost on not training them as well, because you're going to lose a lot of customers. And the other thing is training you, you know who's looking after you. Right now we're having this conversation. And hopefully you're learning a few things, but who's looking after you regularly and training you?
So yeah, those were the things that I asked about there was only one other thing, which is are staff increasing spend at the table every time? It is one of the four ways of growing your business, number three is increase spend per head.
Again, how do you know, and they have they got script that they follow? Is that the thing that they should say at the table? Do you know that they saying then? Can you see that the certain sections that sell more bottles of wine or more desserts and other sections, watch what they're doing. Maybe get that person who's working on that section to go to a different section where it's not working and see if it's the section or see if it's the person and if it's the person there's some training needs there
So lots of lots of ways there for you to increase your profits. The major one I hope you realizing is you and the issue of mindset and really taking it on board and I know, it's so easy to just want to curl up in a ball at the moment I get it as well. You know, it's seems like the world is beating our door down with a lot of negativity but you know, that's not going to go away and we're certainly personally not going to be able to change everything in the world but we can change what's happening for ourselves.
For families, for our staff teams, and for our clients as well. So it starts with us being positive, having a great mindset, putting these things into place.
Just be aware of that negativity in your head. If you get it, you know, that little voice that says give up, it'll never work. You know, you've got another voice that you can use that say, Yes, it is, I'm going to do it and make it happen. People seem to think responsibilities is a curse, because it means you are responsible for everything, you are guilty when it goes wrong. No, it's not. It's a superpower.
If you say, I am going to take responsibility for this, I'm going to make some difference here. And I'm going to get somebody else on board with me to help me and I'll help them as well. And you know, there's something great that comes out of that, that you will not get by sitting there and hoping that something great will happen.
So thank you again, for filling in the quiz. I hope this has been useful for you. If you want to get in touch with me, you can reply to the email.
And I'm not sure when I'm going to put this video yet. But if I put it on a page where there's a button to talk to me, you can book in your calendar and talk to me if you want to, again, no sales pitch. You can just pick my brains for 15 minutes if you want. That's fine by me. I'll get to know a bit about your business.