Forbes.com – Discussion of the Week

Q: With trends constantly changing, how do you know when it’s time to refresh your brand image, and what goes into a brand makeover?

A: For any brand, you should constantly be aware of consumer trends and be willing to make changes as needed. You have to stay proactive and thoroughly research both your existing customer base and new audiences that you want to attract to help you decide what to change and what to keep the same. You’ve got to stay ahead of the trends. If you’re not willing to invest the time and resources to evolve along with your customer behavior, you might as well call it quits.

Knowing how unpredictable the economy can be and how downturns impact consumer spending at restaurants, our management team took proactive step to enhance the brand and stay relevant. Our research showed product was not an issue–our customers love our food! For us, rebranding meant updating our service model, marketing materials and building design.

There is a lot that goes into a brand makeover, but it all starts with a strong strategy. The key areas would include culture, strong business model, brand marketing plan, prototype and growth strategy. When re-branding, remember the “make new friends, but keep the old” rule.

Never stray too far from your roots. Remember the product that brought you your original success. While your loyal base of customers will recognize and appreciate that you listened and acted on their needs, a steady stream of new customers will follow.

Source: Forbes.com

Schlotzsky’s with a twist

ARLINGTON,TX (JUNE 13) – Arlington’s newest Schlotzsky’s restaurant features the chain’s redesigned concept, which is co-branded with Cinnabon and has workers who bring your order to your table.

The recently opened location, 5001 S. Cooper St., south of Interstate 20, created 25 jobs.

“With our addictive recipes, upbeat surroundings and funny sayings, we’re adding tremendous flavor to Arlington’s quick-casual dining scene,” said Niles Patel, franchise partner of the new location. “Arlington is in for a real treat.”

Schlotzsky’s offers sandwiches, wraps, panini, gourmet pizzas, salads, soups and desserts, now including a Cinnabon Express station.

Schlotzsky’s has more than 350 locations worldwide and plans to have more than 600 by 2015.

Source: The Star-Telegram

Rolling business: Cinnabon offerings now available at Schlotzsky’s

JOPLIN, Mo. — David Duncan’s business just got a little sweeter.

Duncan and his wife, Kim, franchise owners of Joplin’s area Schlotzsky’s restaurants, have just launched a Cinnabon Express inside the sandwich shop’s Range Line Road location. Duncan and his staff have been selling the Cinnabon Classic roll, Caramel Pecanbon, multi-packs and other products since Sunday and he said they’ve been going over well. Read more.

Source: The Joplin Globe

Schlotzsky’s goes sweet in Ruidoso

RUIDOSO – The 30-year-old Schlotzsky’s restaurant in Ruidoso added a Cinnabon Express to its location west of downtown on June 3.

Franchisee Jimmy Goodwin said the Cinnabon brand has a loyal following. “People are used to seeing it in airports and malls, and it’s become a standard feature in all Schlotzsky’s,” Goodwin said.

Goodwin says 54 of the Austin, Texas-based Schlotzsky’s franchises feature a Cinnabon counter. Ruidoso patrons will be able to purchase several Cinnabon products, such as the Cinnabon Classic, PecanBons and CinnaPacks. Read more.

Source: New Mexico Business Weekly

Schlotzsky’s Hits the Road with Route 66 Promotion

Austin, TX (May 31, 2010) Pack your bags and hit the road this summer with Schlotzsky’s Route 66 promotion, now through August 29. For the first time, we’re putting together a two-part promotion centered around famous stops along the historic Route 66 highway.

Part one of the promo features three sandwiches that will take you through the first leg of the tour, making their way from Chicago, through Tulsa, and on to Albuquerque. Part two will start in the fall and finish out the trip down Route 66, heading through New Mexico and California. But first we have a grand summer adventure planned with our three Route 66 sandwiches, which feature large portions of premium meats.

The first stop along this American highway is the Windy City Pastrami & Swiss, with slices of top-quality pastrami and Swiss cheese with Dijon mustard, served on our dark rye bread.

Next up is the Tulsa Two-Step Angus Beef & Cheddar, featuring Angus roast beef, crispy bacon strips, cheddar cheese and red onions topped with hickory BBQ sauce and served on Schlotzsky’s signature Fresh-from-Scratch® sourdough buns.

And rounding out this historic trip is the Albuquerque Turkey, with smoked turkey breast and crispy bacon strips, cheddar, mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses layered with fire-roasted vegetables, shredded lettuce and chipotle mayonnaise and served on our kickin’ jalapeño cheese buns.

“This is a very unique promotion for us in that we’re serving three sandwiches, each with various meats and cheeses, which gives us a real variety for the flavor profile,” said President Kelly Roddy.  “With generous portions of high-quality cuts of pastrami, Angus beef and smoked turkey, everyone is sure to find a sandwich they love with the Route 66 promotion.”

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