In the latest episode of Hospitality Hangout, hosts Michael Schatzberg, known as “The Restaurant Guy,” and Jimmy Frischling, “The Finance Guy,” deep-dive into the intricacies of restaurant marketing with industry insiders, Joe Reinstein, Executive Director of the Digital Restaurant Association (DRA), and Karim Webb, Buffalo Wild Wings Franchisee and Principal at Webb Investments.
Reinstein, who holds the dual role of CEO and Acting Chair of the Board of Directors at the DRA, spearheads the association’s mission to guide restaurants in maximizing profitability and growth in the digital world. This encompasses advocacy for public policy, educational resources, and technological solutions, to name a few. He brings to the table his pivotal role in launching the DRA with the goal of it becoming the primary restaurant industry resource for online revenue generation, innovation, and growth.
Webb, on the other hand, leverages his background as a franchisee and civic leader to add a unique perspective to the discussion. As a multi-unit Buffalo Wild Wings franchisee, a board member of the DRA, the Airport Commissioners/LAX, California Community Foundation, and EveryTable, and a principal at Webb Investments, Webb shares insights from his rich experience in the restaurant industry and his focus on social equity ownership models. He also offers a voice for small business owners struggling to navigate an increasingly complex marketplace.
As the conversation unfolded, the guests discussed their experiences in a range of topics, focusing on the unique challenges and opportunities for restaurants in the current digital landscape. Webb shared his perspective on being a franchisee and small business advocate, emphasizing the importance of understanding and harnessing the right tools to compete in today’s market.
Frischling and Schatzberg then turned the conversation toward restaurant marketing, outlining three key areas they planned to explore: third-party marketplaces (or DSP, Delivery Service Platforms Marketing), guest feedback marketing, and social advocacy marketing. Webb and Reinstein were invited to offer their unique perspectives on these topics, starting with third-party marketplaces.
Reinstein highlighted the importance of restaurants maintaining a presence on third-party platforms, describing them as “pay-to-play marketplaces” where restaurants need to invest to be noticed. He further advised restaurants to experiment and test their approaches to these platforms, while also stressing the need for a comprehensive online ordering and delivery approach beyond just third-party platforms.
The conversation continued with a robust discussion on these and other critical issues facing today’s restaurants, offering listeners a unique blend of perspectives from various angles of the industry.
To hear all of the insights Webb and Reinstein shared during the discussion and the “Branded Quickfire” and the “Foodservice Feud,” check out this episode of Hospitality Hangout.