The week in ideas, February 8, 2013

Quizno's uses behavior and location to run a successful mobile campaign, the USDA is following their own advice, a restaurant rewards well-behaved kiddos and gets a spot on the Today show, snatching delivery guys' tips to cover fees is a no-no, and McD's is upping the service level down under.

Idea #1: Your ad in their hands. Quizno’s recently ran a mobile campaign in Portland, Ore. generated a significant 20 percent increase in coupon redemption in that market. The secret to their success wasn’t just geographic targeting, but boosting it with behavioral targeting as well.

Idea #2: USDA putting their money where their mouth is. Not a restaurant idea, but you should be aware the USDA is getting a taste of their own medicine. They are going fryer-less… As in not a single deep-fat fryer in their cafeterias, which serve more than 40K people, including members of the public, each month. They will automatically serve 100% whole wheat breads and pastas, there’s a station in the main cafeteria that conforms to the low-sodium, low-fat, low-cholesterol and low-calorie requirements, and there will be a daily MyPlate example on display.

Idea #3: Rewards for good behavior. A restaurant in Kingston, Washington, rewarded a family of well-behaved children with a meal discount – and the results went viral.

Idea #4: Tips are not intended to cover fees. A lawsuit against a restaurant on the Upper West Side of New York City claims the restaurant was swiping tips from delivery workers for orders placed online. Their defense? They’re using them to recoup fees charged by the online delivery sites. The judge isn’t buying it.

Idea #5: Table service at a McDonald’s? That’s right. They’re testing it in Australia.

Today's top stories

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1. Keep a “cemetery portfolio.” Just because an idea doesn’t wow you the first time doesn’t mean it needs to die. One R&D chef mentioned that he compiles what he calls a “cemetery portfolio,” a...
2
Shares of burger chain Shake Shack Inc. SHAK, +1.47% hit a record of $89.55 early Thursday, after a report that the company is mulling opening a "chicken shack". CNBC reported that a unit of the...
3
What CMO doesn't have millennial burnout? Tailoring the perfect marketing messages to today's young adults seems like it's been the marketing holy grail for years. The good news is that brands can...
4
The Frisch’s family restaurant chain said it has agreed to be acquired by the private-equity fund NRD Partners I for $175 million, or $34 per share. Frisch’s operates 95 restaurants and has...
5
The Culinary Institute of America has named Fernando Salazar managing director of the school’s San Antonio campus, effective June 1. Salazar, formerly vice president of food and beverage for Wyndham...
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The Restaurant Opportunities Center said it has filed a resolution as a shareholder of McDonald’s that would force the franchisor to stop paying dues and providing any lobbying support to the...
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McDonald's Corp (MCD.N) shareholders on Thursday approved a proposal that would make it easier to nominate directors to the board of the fast-food chain, which is in turnaround mode after losing...
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Olive Garden got a scathing lecture from shareholder Starboard Value last year on the restaurant chain’s failings, including its bloated menu and a lack of salt in pasta water. Now it’s time for...