**Writers note: I am currently taking a restaurant/motel manager certification class. The instructor from a local college comes to our casino every Tuesday. The casino pays for everything ---unless we do not finish the class with a C grade or betterer. I am currently very behind. But this is an amazing opportunity, so have been quickly trying to catch up. We just had to write a report on a restaurant we had recently visited--tuff assignment right? Anyways I am going to post this as my blog post for the moment, but while you are reading this, am working on a new blog post---and a pot of coffee!
Project 1 Marketing
With three kids, full time work, and a wife that is diabetic and in and out of the hospital a lot it seems right now--going out to eat is usually not an option for us. Enjoying the experience is a seldom found privilege for us. Although we try to sneak away from the kids and eat some were good as much as life allows. If we have the kids with us, it is usually a quick in and out meal. Last week after visiting my wife who was admitted to TMC hospital, I noted that there was an Apple Bee's on Grant Road. I personally love the restaurant. But had not been able to find one in Tucson before this. The only places my wife and I repeatedly visit are The Olive Garden--- hidden meaning in our long relationship, and Denny's A place that is consistently the same, no matter where you visit. A few days later after a check up doctors visit, we stopped at Apple Bee's.
It has been three years since we have been to an Apple Bee's and the menu has changed a lot. But everything on the menu and advertised looks amazing. From there commercials to there on table tablets---advertising is key. Multiple menus--and ads all over the table, the server mentions random specials while placing our drink orders. The on table tablet lets you play games and such, BUT is also loaded with more ads and deals the restaurant has to offer. It was almost over kill---like stepping into an online store jammed full of pop up ads. Like they were pushing there deals at us, not a bad thing, but they had SO many deals to offer. The target market seemed to be twenty something diners to about forty year olds. But there was so much marketing for sales going on at once, it was a turn off for me. Luckily my beautiful wife's company was enough to keep me there.
We did pick a great two for one meal deal. With an appetizer, two meals, and a desert for only twenty dollars. The food was amazing, and after ordering, the sales pitches pretty much stopped. And we were left to enjoy the great food and attmospehere. The food was just like I recalled from the past, and a major reason we visited that day. All of the products were amazing. And a quick scan of the adult beverage menu offered some favorite choices of mine---including "Fat Tire" beer. Although we did not indulge on this day. A mental note was takin' for our next visit.
The property was not very appealing---at least on the outside. Just off of Grant Road--and mainly surrounded by lots of parking lot and other low end businesses. I believe there were a few dying bushes outside surrounded by rocks. And of course lots of pavement. Inside is a different story. Very homey and comforting. With local decor all over the walls. Each location appears to be the same inside at first glance ---but the pictures and decor of each are catered to the town or city they are in. Or even neighborhood, if several stores can be found in the same city. I enjoy this.
Maybe I do not pay attention---or maybe until just lately I did not have access to local TV stations. But it took us three years of living here to find this location. They do any amazing job of product marketing once inside the location. Although I felt there was to much product marketing going on at the same time. Where it was hard to focus on any one deal. But there focus on getting people to there location has been lost---at least to us.
The service, store cleanliness, attitude, and food was amazing. And now that we know where the restaurant is located, we will defiantly be back. The outside of the store could have been spruced up a lot in my eyes, but the looks outside would not keep me from coming back. Although I could see how this might keep diners in there perfect market from even stopping at the location. It is not enticing from the outside at all, except for the stores name and brand. I also noted that almost no menu items were near the healthy range. Most items were deep fried or the likes. I personally did not have a big issue with this selection, but feel many people in our target age bracket are much more health concerned. My wife is also diabetic as are many people, and found it hard to order things she was supposed to eat. But that goes for many restaurants.