BONUS: Introducing NRN’s first-ever Brand Icon

November 14, 2022 00:21:15
BONUS: Introducing NRN’s first-ever Brand Icon
Extra Serving
BONUS: Introducing NRN’s first-ever Brand Icon
/

Hosted By

Holly Petre

Show Notes

On this very special episode of Extra Serving, we go behind the scenes of NRN’s first-ever Brand Icon: White Castle. This 101-year-old slider chain continues to push the envelope on innovation even as it protects its century-long legacy.

In this exclusive audio feature, you’ll hear from CEO Lisa Ingram and other White Castle executives about how the brand continues to modernize while honoring its rich history, how its unique culture has led to industry-leading retention rates, and how its irreverent attitude and quirky spirit have created a cult following of Cravers.

Want to learn more? To read our Brand Icon feature and take an exclusive video tour of White Castle headquarters, head to nrn.com/whitecastle.

Other Episodes

Episode

April 03, 2020 00:19:20
Episode Cover

Kitchen United’s Jim Collins on the 3 keys to success right now during the coronavirus pandemic

Kitchen United, the ghost kitchen operator, started with the objective of meeting the changing needs of restaurants and their diners. Of course, they could not have predicted how fast these needs would change. The coronavirus pandemic has sped up consumers’ move to off-premise, but the company, and it’s CEO Jim Collins, are determined to help restaurants meet these needs, now and in the future. “One of the things we knew about consumer behavior coming into this was that consumers who tried getting food delivered at home, liked it and tended to adopt it and reuse it,” he said on NRN’s podcast Extra Serving. Now, many consumers must order delivery or takeaway as restaurants across the country have shut down dine-in operations due to social distancing guidelines. He predicts the adoption rate of online ordering and delivery will increase, and it’ll become normal behavior. But what about right now when restaurants are facing hardships and wondering if they’ll survive? It might not be the right time to overhaul your restaurant concept or join a ghost kitchen facility, but a few small changes can keep a business relevant, said Collins. He breaks them down like this: 1. Refine your menus: Right now, your customers are likely reading your menu on their phone, and your staff might be limited. Cut menu items accordingly. 2. Consider family meals: Kitchen United has seen an uptick in sales of larger portions. A hot and ready to serve meal plus a meal kit option for another day is an excellent way to go, said Collins. 3. Open your sales channels: This isn’t the time for exclusive partnerships with third-party marketplaces, like Grubhub or DoorDash. Make your restaurant findable. ...

Listen

Episode

July 01, 2022 00:57:08
Episode Cover

NRN editors discuss Denny Marie Post’s new job at Nextbite, value promotions amid inflation and the importance of marketing

This week on the Extra Serving podcast, a production of Nation’s Restaurant News, NRN editors Holly Petre, Leigh Anne Zinsmeister, Sam Oches and Joanna Fantozzi discussed former Red Robin CEO Denny Marie Post’s new job at Nextbite, the virtual-dining company. Earlier this week, Post signed on to become co-president of Nextbite alongside Paul Allen, reporting to CEO Alex Canter. The former large-chain exec will help the growing virtual brand company in her field of expertise: marketing. The team discussed what this means for the brand and also the future of marketing for all brands, how important it is to market a brand and how it should be done. Next, the team discussed value promotions. Recently, chains have been coming out with value promotions amid the rising cost of goods and surging menu prices. For a while, chain executives said customers were ok with price hikes, yet it seems the tables have turned, the team observed, as places like White Castle are releasing value promotions with lowered prices.  This week’s interview is Robert Maynard, CEO of Famous Toastery, who spoke with Fantozzi about inflation and how it’s impacted his business. ...

Listen

Episode 10

July 13, 2021 00:22:10
Episode Cover

Just Salad keeps sustainability as its ‘north star’

New York City-based Just Salad was in a peculiar spot when the pandemic started. A small restaurant company — only 50 units — the fast-casual salad chain decided in March 2020 to donate meals to hospital workers while its own stores were temporarily shut down due to COVID restrictions. But, as CEO Nick Kenner explains, it’s in the brand’s DNA, caring for fellow New Yorkers and leaving the world better than when the company began. Another important element of that is sustainability, something that became trickier to uphold during COVID, when regulations took away the ease of reusables.  That, however, did not stop Just Salad and the team’s chief sustainability officer Sandra Noonan from continuing to innovate. “We’re always going to focus on sustainability; it’s our north star,” said Kenner. And Kenner points out that sustainability is not a financial hole as some companies think it is. In fact, Just Salad grew units and left 2020 in the black while remaining green at its core.  “[Sustainability] does not run counter to business…consumers demand it and consumers know which brands are doing it to do it and which are doing it to lead,” he said. ...

Listen