Last podcast covered the trends and the megatrend for indie restaurants. We look at the trends for restaurants we see in 2018.
5. Experience Design – VR experience at Restaurant Lume, Saved by the Max in Chicago and now LA. These are examples of restaurants that are doing a great job with designeing an experience. Where there is experience, there is margin!
6. Zero waste – decrease food costs and environmentally responsible. Consumers are looking for more opportunities to dine at eco friendly restaurants.
7. Meal labelling – In an effort to improve health, consumers are a lot more interested in the ingredients that are in the meals that they are eating and the carbs and fats in the meals, allowing them to make better choices.
8. Health – Flexitarianism and a growing trend towards people’s changing tastes as they look for a more healthy diet. People will still want to have a great experience, but decouple it from being a ‘naughty treat’. How can you improve the healthy benefits of your food. Sub niching towards meals like ketogenic meals.
9. Hyperlocal – building an ecosystem around the local area. Food precincts, partner with other restaurants and other businesses to leverage different strengths.
10. Fine casual – providing elements of fine dining with a casual dining type experience. Bring those elements into a medium price point. Expensive cutlery in a hamburger joint with table service enabling them to increase the price point that is sustainable.
11. Cuisine – More non traditional cuisines like Israeli, Filippino and Eastern European cuisine based restaurants. These restaurants traditionally target their expat market, but the focus will be on building that cuisines brand and building a strong repeat customer base out of locals who have never experienced that culture.
12. Menu experimentation – more weird things are going to appear, like chicken donuts.
13. Story telling – What is your authentic, passionate story? How does it relate to your customers and how are you going to tell that story?
14. Marketing – Restaurants will be forced to start taking their marketing a lot more seriously. Running Facebook ads will become increasingly popular. We see only 5% of indie restaurants running Facebook ads and that will increase dramatically next year. Facebook videos – this is really the hottest marketing tool available to restaurants today. More restaurants will look at those restaurants killing it on FB videos and think “why not me?” and after those first couple of awkward videos, you will see a big improvement in return. (Have a look at some of our first videos – they were awful!)