How To

The 5 must of your successful F&B concept



Vision, Branding, Standards, Marketing, Technology

Everybody can have a brilliant idea and the most of the times it can be transformed in a business concept. but: What is the story? what are the feelings? How will you communicate the concept to the team and drop down all single parts of it? it’s just like a language and we must to know what and how to use it to be understood. Lets start with the..

“Leading Vision” 

1)The leading vision

A leading Vision is the “helm” of the entire concept, bar, restaurant, FMCG, it doesn’t matter what industry it is, behind any successful concept there is always a Leading Vision. Once we have the vision, our main goal is sharing it with all involved team, like this all departments will work at the same drum, following common directions, and automatically this synergy will develop all the concept’s system until the very last member of the team.. “The Final customer”.

2) Total branding

The Brand is the interface in between Vision and final customer.

The brand is our own code of communication.

when you see even a simple logo, a huge amount of information comes in your mind, colors, emotions, even the taste of the food…. why? what did they do? Branding the tool we have to communicate our feelings, contents, offers, and to be sure that with 1 single eyesight we get in to the emotional memory of our customer, making an imprint impossible to forget. but… where is the branding? how can we communicate?

  • Visual: Logos, colors, uniforms, interiors, exteriors, architecture, tools, menu lay out, materials…
  • Emotional: colors, smells, taste, lighting, sounds, materials….
  • Operative: F&B products, Standard of service, Operative standards, attitude, operation time…

and more and more, the branding must to be total. At the end of the story.. we are all children of the “hype world”

3) The Operative standards

The operative standards are the laws, the glue, the rules that builds up our branding/vision and keep it safe and consistent. Standards can be the use of the logo, the color of the uniforms, but standard is also the attitude of the service, the quality of the food, the speed of the delivery, all this included in SOP and SSS.

It is the only way and the key to develop a chain. As we know the most important characteristic of a business to be expanded/developed, it is the possibility it has to be multipliable and scalable, and the only way we have to be sure of this, is to have: written and regulated standards.

4)Marketing Strategy

watch out from this word, “Marketing”, it is the largest business department at the moment, it is basically everywhere. i use to say:

Marketing is everything comes right after the Idea

and stays with the customer even after he pays and leaves. For many business owners, marketing is associated the most with PR or Media Management, well, for us, Marketing is not a what but is a how. It is the way we position our idea to the market, therefore it is just everything. Marketing cant be related to only one department, but must to be involved in any single step of the business, what should be an:

Integrated Marketing Approach

business planning, sales, up selling, communication, promotions, standards, media, website, PR, events, expansion plans, business development, branding and re-branding…… it is all involved in a good Marketing strategy.

5) The web & IT

WE are in the 2014, the most of the start-ups involve internet and IT. My word on this is that, no matter what is your concept about, think already how you must to work with the Web and IT.

web sites, applications, in house technology, QRs, everything must to lead business and have to be customer friendly. It is just like a business in the business. in the same way you take care of your floor and your service, you must to take care of your technological alias. and what i really want communicate now is the importance that the customer interact with all those tools, provoking a series of actions, all business related.

The Vision is what we want communicate

The Branding is how we communicate it

The Standards are the grammar of our own communication

The Marketing is our ability to communicate, be understood and apprehend others.


About Ermanno Lelli

"Problems are solutions from the wrong point of view" I consider my self as a "Concept engineer", someone who define the vision and brings out the entire money making business concept, expert in media management and marketing, always exploring the latest trends of global F&B Marketing . Over 19 years experience in F&B industry, 2 Masters in Hospitality Management and Food service Management & Marketing, extremely suitable in "high competition and developing environments". Achievements: Best Italian restaurant & Bar in Shanghai 2008/09, La Favola, Le Royal Meridien 1st Facebook page (F&B) to achieve 10000 likes in HK, Catuma 2011 (9700 gap) 1st preopening engagement strategy (F&B) on Social Media in HK, Enomod 2013 1st micro movies marketing strategy (F&B) youtube vehicle in HK, Enomod 2013 Specialties: Concept engineering and Business development, F&B Marketing and Management, branding processes, preopening, project management, Food & Wine knowledge, PR, Events.

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