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Posts Tagged ‘Bobby Flay’

Veteran Food Publicist Says Restaurants Need Better PR Strategies

In the wake of the Groupon collapse, lots of people in the restaurant industry are wondering what’s next. According to PR/food veteran Ellen Malloy, the answer is simple: Instead of focusing on “deals”, restaurants need to take charge of their brands and promotional efforts.

Malloy founded a food-focused PR firm called Restaurant Intelligence Agency in 2007 to help chefs and eateries address the same problems supposedly solved by Groupon–the challenges of connecting to “audiences that matter” and standing out in an extremely crowded field. In an interview with Grub Street Chicago, she explains what that means:

Wowing people who are sitting in your restaurant isn’t marketing strategy, that’s you doing your job. Marketing is what happens once they walk out the door. How are you going to get them back?

The appeal behind Groupon was that restaurants could publicize themselves without paying standard agency fees–the service only collected on sales. But that was also its biggest problem–businesses ran to Groupon because they had no real plan for promoting themselves, and most people who used these “coupons” never became regular customers anyway because they were only interested in getting a “deal”, so revenues remained static.

So what do chefs, restaurant managers and food PR firms need to do?

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Mediabistro Job Fair

Mediabistro Job FairLand your next big gig! Join us on January 27 at the Altman Building in New York City for an incredible opportunity to meet with hiring managers from the top New York media companies, network with other professionals and industry leaders, and land your next job. Register now!

A Stove-Side Chat at a Food Network Fête

Culinary treats were on full display on Wednesday evening when PRSA NY held their holiday event at the Food Network in one of their kitchen studios. Although Iron Chef America’s “Battle Fruitcake” episode aired this past week, the show’s kitchen stadium set was temporarily down for the season.

The Food Network, launched nearly twenty years ago, was a pioneer in featuring food as entertainment on TV and highlighting celebrity chefs. Last year their Cooking Channel launched to appeal to more serious food lovers.  Overall their TV audience numbers over one hundred million U.S. households. Since it’s the more established brand, the Food Network is more active in social media. Over two million fans like their Facebook page and over eight hundred thousand follow them on Twitter.

We spoke briefly to Irika Slavin, VP of communications and public relations, about her experience working at the network for the past year.

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