Secret Sauce - The Restaurant Marketing Podcast

We discover the ingredients of your Restaurant's secret sauce. SEO, Facebook, Twitter, emails, coupons, yield utilization, USPs, Menu engineering, direct mail, partnerships - there are many ingredients for creating your Secret Sauce and with the right Secret Sauce you can find more customers and turn them into repeat customers. We deconstruct the recipes, so you can increase increase turnover, increase profit and maybe decrease the amount of time you spend working in your Restaurant.
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Secret Sauce - The Restaurant Marketing Podcast




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Now displaying: July, 2017
Jul 21, 2017

Hooray - Episode 50.  Thank you so much to everyone who has contributed to the Secret Sauce podcast since we started.


We look at how a lot of Restaurants miss some fundamental marketing steps and when they get a great public relations win they aren't in a position to capitalise on that win.  Too many restaurants don't have a website, they don't have the Facebook pixel installed, they which means it is a lot harder to build a strong brand and find new customers and turn them into repeat customers.

We discuss what intellectual property and intangible assets.  These can have an impact on the price that you pay when you buy a restaurant and definitely can impact the price of the restaurant that you sell for.

Does a restaurant have an email list?  How big is it and how 

Domain Names - These are sometimes registered by aggegators like Menulog, or they can register a similar name.

Facebook Pages - who is the owner of the Facebook page, who has access to it?

Do you have an unofficial Facebook Page? Is there a site that Facebook created for you?  You need to claim that.

Do you have an unofficial Google My Business account?  You need to claim that and ensure that the information is correct.  We have seen peoples business listed as Permanently Closed and they are still open.  Very few customers would go to a Restaurant that Google has listed as Permanently Closed and unfortunately dodgey competitors may list your restaurant as permanently closed.

Check out your restaurants google listing from an incognito mode browser so that you can see your restaurants as other people will see it.

Look for fake websites.  We see this all the time and there are thousands of restaurant brand jacking websites, set up by shonky online ordering companies.

Brand jacking can mean that you are missing out on all of the emails of your customers.

Check the details of your Google Knowledge Panel.  Many restaurant aggregators can try to hijack the Google Knowledge Panel to hijack your customers.  We look at restaurant adwords arbitrage and how it can be costing your Restaurant tens of thousands of dollars every year.

We talk about how companies like Dimmi can attempt to hijack customers look for your restaurant and drive them to a restaurant using Dimmi.  We wrote an article about what happened to Brae and how Dimmi was trying to steal their customers.

Make a booking at your own restaurant with a new gmail account and see what kind of emails you receive from your booking company.

We finish of with a story of how restaurant aggregators want to minimise the impact of your brand and your story.  The only way that they can stand out in these online ordering platforms is with price, which decreases their ability to really create some awesome food.

If you are having issues with your Google Knowledge Panel, Facebook Page, fake websites or domain name hijackers, please contact the M4R team, we deal with these issues every day and we know the best ways to help you to protect your own intellectual property.

Jul 15, 2017

We talk to Robbie Doyle from Buy Grow Sell about the pitfalls and opportunities in negotiating a Restaurant property lease.

This is particularly topical in Australia, with Sumo Salad putting two leasing companies into Administration because of the difficulties that they have had in negotiating the leases with Westfield.  Westfield, like a lot of shopping centre owners have tried to respond to decreasing retail trade by increasing the experiential opportunities for customers, and this has seen an increase in the number of restaurants in shopping centres with no increase in customers, in fact some shopping centres are seeing decreasing foot traffic.

Where can restaurant owners find properties that have affordable rents?

We discuss some of traps that can be included in a lease offer.

We look at how many restaurant owners buy their property versus leasing.  Buying gives you a friendly landlord, but it is expensive and if the restaurant goes badly, you have a struggling lease and a struggling tenant to deal with at the same time.

What are the different types of lease that are available and how can you structure that with your exit plan, especially when you factor in the fitout costs that will be sunk into the property.  

If you've got questions on Restaurant Leases, Robbie has very generously offered to help you out, so contact him at

Should you get a lawyer to review your Restaurant Lease?  Robbie discusses some of the caveats that can be put onto a lease,  and how they can affect your over the time of the lease.

What are the parts of the lease that are negotiable and how can you get the best terms for your Restaurant?  Robbie provides some great insights into what Landlords can be thinking and the factors that drive the way that they negotiate.

Robbie shares a lot of great insights into the Restaurant Leasing process that can make the process a lot less painful for you the next time that you need to negotiate a lease.

We finish off with the great story of Robbie's first Restaurant.  A talented chef, he was undercapitalised, but with a little out of the box thinking, he was able to get his first start in a Restaurant.  His story has some great ideas in it for those struggle to get the money together to begin their own Restaurant story.


Jul 6, 2017

We talk about Kalimera Souvlaki Art, which was recently written up in the New York Times by Sam Sifton.  How does a Souvlaki Restaurant in Melbourne Australia get written up in the New York Times?

We talk to Veronica Fil, the Business Manager at Restaurant Lume. Lume was voted the Gault and Millau Restaurant of the Year in 2016.

Lume works very hard to create unique experiences for diners.  They use actors, script writers and use psychological tests to work and are pushing the boundaries in the way that food is experienced in their restaurant. The are attracting a significantly younger audience market than a traditional fine dining venue.

Understanding their customers is a critical part of the Lume experience.  With a high percentage of customers from China, they learned that many were not drinking wine, so they created a tailored mocktail drink pairing with their meal.

Lume has adopted Virtual Reality to push the boundary on the way that their guests experience their food.  They have created VR experiences that significantly pushes the limits of multi sensory dining.  By combining the story of the ingredients, the preparation and the restaurant into a Virtual Reality experience with scents, auditory cues and tactile sensations.  

Restaurant Lume has reduced No Shows to zero in their restaurant. This is a phenomenal result because No Shows in fine dining are especially expensive in fine dining.  They adopted Tock as a booking engine that takes pre bookings.  They were losing up to $3,000 a week to zero.  This is the difference between Lume surviving through to the point where they are very popular and having run out of cash and going out of business.

Lume has a reputation of providing some of the best Corporate Event experiences in the country.  Large corporate customers looking for something to WOW their customers with and provide their customers with a unique experience have becoming   For one event they created a perfume for the event, a bespoke menu based on local ingredients of the customer, they had a photographer at the event and used those photographs to create a cook book of the recipes from the event with photos of the participants in it.  The diners get a memento of the event, a cook book that features photos of themselves delivered to them weeks after the event, reminding them of it.  The customer gets branding that will stay with the customers.

Lume is continuing to create cutting edge multisensory dining experiences, starting to work with augmented reality.

All of the experiences have the foundation of Chef Quade and the team creating amazing food.  We will talk to Chef Quade in a future podcast about his journey and his approach to restaurant creativity and innovation.