Business Builders

Smart Ideas

Charity Dressing

Restaurateur Dan Poggie sells his house-made salad dressing to support a local women’s shelter. Danny donates his time, ingredients, and bottles, so the shelter gets 100% of the purchase price. Tasteful signs at the pizzeria remind customers that their purchases have raised more than $10,000 over time! In addition to enjoying Danny’s dressing at home (and supporting a worthy cause), customers feel closer to the restaurant too!

Dan Poggie, Owner Danny’s Pizza Enfield, CT


Nostalgia on the Cheap

After investing in a new wood-fired oven, Angelo Womack and his partners had little cash left over to decorate their new artisan pizzeria. So they celebrated 1980s pop culture by hanging up dozens of ’80s band album covers sourced cheaply at local garage sales and tucking a used TV/VCR combo into a corner to silently loop film classics like “The Breakfast Club” and “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.” Campy nostalgia aside, it is Angelo’s pizza which steals the spotlight every time!

Angelo Womack, Co-Owner Oak and Rye Los Gatos, CA


Online Dessert Pics Boost Sales

Understanding that “people eat first with their eyes,” restaurateur Se’an Dempsey creates attractive new desserts weekly and posts their mouthwatering photos on Facebook every Sunday. Each picture (taken with his smartphone) is accompanied by a brief, tempting description which never mentions price. As a result, dessert sales are consistently higher by two to three orders nightly at full price, making these sales gains highly profitable.

Se’an Dempsey, Owner Dempsey’s Watertown, SD


“Meet the Artist” Receptions

Owner Sharon Torres has found a way to deepen her community roots while giving potential guests a great reason to try her food! Each month, Sharon invites a different local artist to display their paintings on her dining room walls and kicks off each exhibition with a free evening reception.

Guests and newcomers are invited to come “meet the artist” while enjoying a complimentary glass of wine and bite-sized samples of Sharon’s gourmet pizza. The fun, free social events have helped Sharon get to know regulars better while providing the perfect excuse to invite potential new customers to come try her food without its feeling self-serving or “gimicky!”

Sharon Torres, Owner Cassano’s San Clemente, CA


Recycling Chute

Like many restaurateurs, Tony Scalise collects and redeems beverage containers for their state redemption value. But rather than cluttering his storeroom with boxes of empties, Tony created a clever way to transfer them into secure storage containers behind his restaurant without his employees leaving the building. Tony placed a lidded trash can in the gated area directly behind his store room.

He then cut 4” diameter holes in the store room wall above the trash can and its hinged lid. He then connected the two with a steeply angled length of 4” diameter PVC pipe. So now whenever Tony’s team needs to clear empties, they just drop them down the storeroom “chute” into the lidded receptacle below!

Tony Scalise, Owner Prima Pizza Cornwall, NY