I could use some help with a tough assignment. I’m a freshman in college and currently an undeclared major. I’m in two business classes, and one of them is way more difficult than I imagined it would be. We present business cases every class session based on readings or some prompt given during the previous lecture.
Last week, I was given the prompt: “How would you launch a restaurant business in a foreign market like Australia?” The solutions don’t have to be too in-depth but they have to make sense. Other prompts have mostly been product-related, discussing business practices concerning smartwatches or consumer aerial drones.
Those are easier in my opinion because my other business class is mostly about product development. Services are new to me so I could use some guidance.
The first helpful tip would be to explore the major differences between starting a product- versus a service-oriented business. Carlos Saba, co-founder of The Happy Startup School, published an informative Medium blog comparing both business models. While his insights stem primarily from experience running a digital agency, much of his wisdom is widely applicable. The points outlined should be easy enough to grasp, but you should also remember that a restaurant blends both products (i.e, cuisines and beverages) and services (i.e., preparation, serving, bartending, entertainment, etc.) together.
Contributor Ryan Rogowski at Entrepreneur wrote a useful piece highlighting 5 tips for starting a business abroad. The very first item on his list suggests that aspiring business owners should localize their idea, vision, and expectations. You’d be surprised just how often people fail to do this, despite its clear advantages. Although Australia is a developed nation with English as its native tongue, that doesn’t mean there aren’t an abundance of cultural nuances that might impact business viability. In other words, a first practical step would be to visit Australia to investigate the market.
The hospitality industry can be especially grueling, which is why so many restaurants eventually close their doors. The key is closing the doors on your terms and not before you’ve achieved success. Jeff Haden at Inc. offered 6 tips for starting a killer restaurant that succinctly covers the core fundamentals. Pay close attention to what he refers to as “the big three,” which includes having a great chef, great location, and great concept.
Some of those items are impossible to finalize for your presentation but you should identify possible options within each category. For instance, instead of selecting a chef, you could identify the best culinary schools and propose recruiting directly from them. The location would again be difficult without visiting the market but you could utilize Google Maps with street view to at least showcase possible real estate for development. A compelling culinary concept and customer experience aren’t as simple as they sound. Food tastes and preferences can vary widely by culture and geography. In other words, don’t make the mistake of assuming a popular American concept will succeed abroad.
The last thing to consider, once your theoretical business is underway, is how you plan to market and promote your restaurant. Gone are the days when you can rely on the “build it and they shall come” mentality. You have to consider your digital footprint just as much as your physical one. This is all to say that you need an adequate website. Kelly Shelton declared SEO a small business necessity, which means you’ll have to perform due diligence on that from, too.
Fortunately, you don’t necessarily have to assume responsibility for SEO. The most important thing is that you understand what it is and why it’s important to your business success. It might make more sense to tap into a local Brisbane SEO company for guidance and implementation services. That also gives you the added benefit of further developing your business network in the relevant marketplace.
These recommendations aren’t exhaustive, but they’re some of the most relevant. There are also licenses, certificates, taxes, and other regulations to consider but those items are easily addressed with the aid of legal counsel.
“A great restaurant doesn’t distinguish itself by how few mistakes it makes but by how well they handle those mistakes.” -- Danny Meyer