Restaurant owners have one of the toughest gigs on the planet. In a recent story in the Boston Globe, psychologists weighed in on why owning a restaurant can be such a taxing occupation, particularly on one’s mental health. Not only are there the tremendous levels of uncertainty amid the daily operations of a restaurant, social media is bringing a new type of anxiety: one bad review, and your reputation is at risk.
Amid this swirl of difficulty, it’s vital for restaurant owners to find online resources and connect to their tribe in the greater industry, to help keep abreast of changing conditions, the newest trends to watch and inspirational advice for entrepreneurs who are putting their hearts on the line every day to feed others. Here at Instore, we blog about the issues that face restaurant owners as well as small business owners across the retail spectrum, and here is our pick of five blogs that all restaurant owners should be watching:
This is one of the original food blogs. With New York a pulsing hub of the gastronomic world, Grub Street offers your daily view into the city. It’s run by the team at New York Magazine and delivers a steady stream of great posts like this recent article about Jonathan Rubinstein, the owner of the coffee chain Joe, which follows his journeys around some of the city’s top food spots. Here you’ll find compelling stories by New York Magazine’s restaurant critic Adam Platt, such as this piece where he muses on how restaurant blogs have redefined dining in the last decade. “The blogosphere made the restaurant scene a more hectic, unruly place, but it’s also made it more varied, more democratic, more accessible, and more diverse.”
Head to Restaurant Business for all the new trends in the restaurant industry. It’s the go-to place for articles on the newest reports and trends sweeping the food industry and has a good mix of inspiration and the nitty gritty on business tools to help you grow your restaurant. For example, what’s your policy on the music playing in your restaurant—are you in danger of being fined up to $150,000 for music violation?
Created by the media geniuses at Vox Media, Eater is on the ground in 24 cities across North America and is an important platform for the new generation of food-lovers. This is where you’ll find topical stories, like this piece that looks at the implications for restaurant owners of the immigration raids happening in the United States (complete with a list of employees rights). It’s also does longform food journalism incredibly well, such as this fantastic journey into Jessica Koslow’s Swirl, “the restaurant at the center of New York’s undying, sun-soaked fantasy of Los Angeles.”
Restaurateurs are small business owners who have to juggle a tremendous variety of skills. This is a slight wild card in our list, but American Express’s Open Forum blog offers excellent management advice for small business owners, such as this story, “How to Get Out of a Daily Rut.” (Sometimes all you need to do is go for a walk.) It’s essential to spend time honing in on the daily operations, and this blog helps provide sound advice for small business owners.
The team at Restaurant Den designs websites for restaurants but their Restaurant Owner Blog is a good place to dip into for tips on advertising, social media, email marketing and more. They offer a great guide on how to set up Snapchat for your business, where they talk you through how to set-up your account, how to market it, and then a seven-stage guide to the variety of ways you can use Snapchat to power your business.
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