Trendwire, November 2009

Trendwire, November 2009

TrendWire

Trendwire, November 2009

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The Food Channel Trendwire
November 2009 • Volume 25, Number 9 • http://www.foodchannel.com
IN THIS EDITION

As the Decade Turns

As the first decade of the 21st century winds down, we’re sure to see stories about the person of the decade, as well as the top fashion trends, news events, sports teams, and so on “…of the decade.”

It’s a time for summing up; a time to cleanse our palate before we move on to the next 10-year grouping. So, as we start to look back, what were the top restaurant trends of the decade?

The rise of social media was certainly one of the major trends of the last half of the decade. Twitter and Facebook became important marketing tools and led to the launch of roving restaurants across the country. Meals on wheels took on a whole new meaning:

And more and more people were texting in their food orders and even paying for them with their mobile devices: http://foodchannel.com/stories/1742-texting-that-order-in.

The “eating local” trend has had an impact on this decade as more restaurants sought out local ingredients for their menus: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/06183/702183-34.stm.

But what were some of the worst trends of the decade? Perhaps those would be better left unremembered, but Christopher Borrelli of the Chicago Tribune was there to make sure we did not forget, with his list and pictorial of the 10 worst dining trends of the decade: http://www.chicagotribune.com/entertainment/dining/chi-091021-worst-dining-trends-pictures,0,5192606.photogallery.

Getting Help from the “Crowd”

You may have heard about the trend called “crowdsourcing,” a relatively new phenomenon that can have a wide variety of applications—everything from the group-think efforts that make up much of Wikipedia to the voting that creates multimillion-selling recording artists on American Idol. Crowdsourcing is the idea of taking an assignment that would normally be tackled by an individual or small group and turning it over to the “crowd,” i.e., consumers or people at large: http://www.bnet.com/2403-13241_23-52961.html.

Well, crowdsourcing has been working its way into the food marketing business, too. The honchos at PepsiCo are allowing consumers to decide on the advertising agency for a major new marketing campaign for soft drink brand Mountain Dew: http://foodchannel.com/stories/2003-dewmocracy-movement-consumers-to-pick-ad-agency-for-mtn-dew

For the Super Bowl last year, Frito-Lay crowdsourced the creative development for Doritos TV spots that would appear during the game, then asked viewers to vote on their favorite of the consumer-created commercials, with the potential for a $1 million prize if the ad won the USAToday ad poll (also voted on by consumers). BTW: It did win! This year’s Doritos TV-ad-creating “crowd” is vying for $5 million in prize money—as well as air time during the Super Bowl: http://www.pepsico.com/PressRelease/Doritos-Issues-Last-Call-for-Consumer-Created-Ads-Vying-for-5-Million-in-Prizes-10262009.html

Kraft Foods openly seeks out new product, flavor, or recipe ideas from consumers via its Innovate with Kraft program: http://brands.kraftfoods.com/innovatewithkraft/default.aspx

If you’re searching for a new product idea or line extension, or perhaps a new way to refresh your restaurant menu, maybe it’s time to give “the people” an opportunity to assist. But here’s a tip: you’ll probably need an enticing incentive.

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