Today we will talk about updating your Restaurant Concept, exploring this idea, and discovering what is important when undergoing this simple, but crucial task – one that can define your restaurant for years to come.
Why is your restaurant concept Important?
Your restaurant concept defines who you are. It is the face and personality of your establishment and is key to the restaurant’s success. Please do not hesitate to get a professional involved; it will pay off. The process is much like creating a mission statement and then building everything around it.
Your complete concept should tell an interesting story that is congruent with the style and character of the restaurant you are trying to be. Of course, there are many different styles and genres – or you can create your own. It may be upscale and trendy or be a casual neighborhood eatery.
How would you go about it?
First, we would look at your ideal customer: Who are they? Where do they live? How much money do they like to spend? What do they want? Then, we would evaluate the competitive set and see what everyone else is doing. Comparing your vision to the needs of the area is also important. What concepts are out there? Based on all of this, what concepts might fit and what would your price point be.
Onto the concept itself. Our concepts include: name, logo, concept statement, menu outline, pricing recommendations, décor, tableware, service ware, music, lighting, special signature dishes and events, etc., which are all the parts of the concept that work together to create your signature look and feel. Depending on your budget and how detailed your requirements are, this can range from $2,500 to $5,000.
Your concept is your guiding light
Once you have your concept, it is your roadmap for the restaurant’s direction and should be considered before making any and every decision. Does this follow our concept guidelines of who we are and what we are trying to be? This thought process makes it easy to keep everyone, including yourself, on track and going in the same direction.
How crazy do I need to be about this?
Once you have your concept in place, be super passionate about it. Work, live, dream, pound, and push until everyone on your team “gets it”. They need to breathe and dream it. Successful restaurants, or businesses in general, that make a name for themselves, usually do it based on the vision of the ownership or GM who believes in the mission and relentlessly pursues the passion that they believe in. Don’t be afraid to get a little crazy about it [just don’t go overboard]!
Should I vary from these standards?
Once you have your concept in place, then yes, of course, you should adjust and redirect at times. However, always do this deliberately by thinking it over and talking to the team. Don’t just act and change direction on a whim. Great business leaders should never be afraid to redirect and course correct, but not too often. Otherwise you will find yourself chasing your tail and presenting a confusing concept that people may not understand. This will hurt your reputation, and reputation equals revenue!
What do I do to get started?
- Write down your vision as best you can.
- Evaluate the area.
- Hold a meeting to draw up a plan around it.
- Decide on your strengths, passions and potential directions.
- Brainstorm a concept that fits.
- Create a step-by-step plan to encompass all aspects mentioned above.
Or, contact me….
Russ Blakeborough, Owner and Senior Consultant at Focus F&B, would be happy to chat with you about your new concept or idea.