Article: “Independent Restaurants, Lose the Chains” (Jun.2006)

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excerpt:
“You’re ready for the grand opening of your all-American burger joint when you learn McDonald’s is moving in next door. What do you do? Don’t panic. There are a number of steps you can take to give your independent restaurant the edge it needs to take on a chain.

“The number one way small businesses can compete with chains is by nurturing the relationships they have with the customer,” says Joe Erickson, editor of RestaurantOwner.com, an online resource and networking tool for independent restaurateurs. “Collect their names, birthdays, anniversaries, and their specific likes, and use that [information] to start a direct mail campaign….”

source: “Independent Restaurants, Lose the Chains” by Douglas MacMillan (BusinessWeek,Jun.29,2006)

related segment:

An Edible Game Plan

There are a slew of ways to compete with franchises, according to 10 independent restaurateurs around the country…(click here for more)

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