Brand Engagement – Olive Garden Fails at the Fundamentals

This recent blog post on Slate.com recaps a report detailing how Olive Garden has lost its brand focus (the report is from hedge fund Starboard Value and there are links in the post that get you to more details). It’s an important reminder about the importance of brand engagement at all levels of an organization.

Say what you will about the food, at its heart Olive Garden is an Italian restaurant. From Slate.com: ” ‘According to Darden management, Darden decided to stop salting the water to get an extended warranty on their pots,’ Starboard, which is in a proxy fight for control over Darden’s board, explains. ‘Pasta is Olive Garden’s core dish and must be prepared properly. This example shows how disconnected Darden management is from restaurant operations and how little regard Darden management has for the guest experience. If you Google ‘how to cook pasta,’ the first step of Pasta 101 is to salt the water.’ “

What are you selling?

Those of you who listen to podcasts and/or National Public Radio have probably heard This American Life. It’s a great show, right? I love it too but rarely do I find a business justification for listening until a recent episode went straight to my heart as a marketer. Give it a listen . . . it’s worth a hour of your time.

Episode 533: It’s Not the Product, It’s the Person
Starting a business is not for the self-doubting. Or even usually the self-deprecating. The first thing you have to sell is yourself — like dating, but with a greater chance of landing in debt. Alex Blumberg tells the incredible, sweat-stains-and-all saga of a man fumbling through starting a new business, and the man is: himself. Plus, new stories from Mike Birbiglia and Love + Radio.

New Clients Added to Roster

It’s been a busy few months with seven new clients taking advantage of our services.

• Mark Architectural Lighting – marketing
• UIH Family Partners – marketing
• One2edit by 1io - business development
• Brandmark by Mediawide – business development
• MIDJersey Chamber - business development
• Bracco Diagnostics – warehousing and fulfillment
• DSM – warehousing and fulfillment

We look forward to working with these companies and exceeding their expectations!

The Mega Group Expands Its Capabilities

The Mega Group has a long history of being a trusted marketing communications partner, but with the addition of Director of Business Development Lauri Levy to our team, we now officially offer an expanded suite of services. Lauri is a successful business owner in her own right, and she now heads up the business development consulting practice for The Mega Group. Lauri works with companies across a broad range of industries to help promote their businesses. To learn more, visit our business development practice area.

The Mega Group helps Bristol-Myers Squibb with internal product launch

Launching a new formulation of a successful rheumatoid arthritis drug begins with informing the team on the ground of the remarkable potential, both medically and in terms of market share. The Mega Group joined forces with frequent partner Managed Solutions LLC to develop the value proposition and create the tools required for a successful internal launch for managed markets. We built on the intrinsic themes of new flexibility of use, a new audience who will benefit, and new market potential. A spirit video that we created was reprised throughout the three day launch meeting.