Friends Are Friends Even When they Compete
More than 7 out of ten restaurants are single-unit operations. Think of these businesses as one-palm tree islands in the vast ocean of the restaurant industry, each fighting to break through to customers.
In such a fragmented environment it takes far more money and time to find customers than when the market is consolidated. So what’s a restaurant to do? Make friends. Friends who magnify and project your message are critical to breaking through the clutter of a fragmented market.
Twenty one years ago Tribeca Grill opened in a marginal downtown neighborhood. Customers showed up on day one, but the restaurant really took off when other restaurants opened in the area. These new restaurants loosely banded together to amplify the message that it was okay to dine in Tribeca. The louder that message got, the more customers came to the neighborhood. Customers at one restaurant became customers for other restaurants. A virtuous cycle was born.
Had Tribeca Grill not been joined by other restaurants, had those restaurants not joined forces, Tribeca would not be the dining Mecca it is today. Friends, even competing friends, made the million dollar difference.