Restaurant Study: Personalized Online Marketing Strategy Key

Restaurant Study: Personalized Online Marketing Strategy KeyA comprehensive online marketing strategy is key to generating customer engagement and business for your restaurant. But what truly matters to your customer?

According to the New National Restaurant Association and LivingSocial research, electronic marketing channels complement traditional and offline channels as part of a successful marketing mix. However, it is the personalized online messages that have the greatest impact.

“Finding the right marketing mix is crucial to success in the restaurant industry,” said James Balda, Chief Marketing and Communications Officer of the National Restaurant Association. “Our new research outlines the challenges and opportunities of both offline and online marketing to help restaurant operators find the ‘sweet spot’ for promotions by identifying what consumers respond to and how various messaging vehicles are perceived.” Below are some of the highlights of the study.

Online marketing can elevate a restaurant’s brand and attract new customers. Restaurants that use online marketing tend to be viewed by consumers as more modern and more popular.

Customized marketing messages can result in more sales. According to the survey, 87% of consumers would go to or order from a restaurant if provided with a savings offer; on the back end, 95% of restaurant operators perceive savings offers to be an effective marketing tool. Customers reported they would be more inclined to order from that restaurant again if they referenced past restaurant patronage, allowed them to make reservations, or identified them by name.

Consumers sensitive to social media and internet advertising. Customers perceive the least effective efforts to entice them to go to a restaurant include online advertisements (58%), social media (56%), and radio ads (56%). They tended to respond much better to personalized messages and exclusive offers.

Consumers overwhelmingly supported personalized media outlets as influential in their restaurant choices. These elements can be crucial in developing your restaurant’s online marketing strategy. Sinclair Risk and Financial Management has innovative insurance and risk management solutions tailored specifically to the restaurant industry. Contact us today for more information.

J.P. Morgan’s Loss Raises Issue of Risk Management

J.P. Morgan's Loss Raises Issue of Risk ManagementOn May 10, J.P. Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon said the bank had taken $2 billion in trading losses in the past six weeks and could face an additional $1 billion in second-quarter losses due to market volatility.

In several trades Dimon described as “flawed” and “poorly monitored,” concerns about increasingly large investments involving complex trades were dismissed, according to the New York Times. Dimon stated that J.P. Morgan was tripped up with its value-at-risk measure, an early-detection tool that estimates how much a bank could lose on average on a rough trading day. Ideally meant to alert banks of looming overwhelming losses, the bank deployed a new model of the value-at-risk measure that underestimated losses.

When J.P. Morgan redeployed the old model, it nearly doubled the estimated potential losses in the chief investment office where the hedges were done, according to the New York Times.

The loss comes at a critical point in risk management debate for the nation’s largest banks, as legislation seeks to institute more government regulation of where and how banks invest their funds. The “Volcker Rule” aims to restrict the ability of banks whose deposits are federally insured to trade for their own benefits.

The Volcker Rule has met serious resistance from the largest banks because it hinders a huge source of profit. Dimon and J.P. Morgan have been among the most vocal critics of the Volker rule’s increasing legislation. The occurrences at J.P. Morgan have been a huge boost for proponents of the Volcker Rule.

J.P. Morgan is in the business of mitigating and assessing risks- in their case the system of checks and balances to monitor their company risks failed to avoid a $2 billion dollar pitfall. Most companies don’t face the scale of risk that a finance giant like J.P. Morgan faces. Regardless, the better you are able to identify, analyze, and control the risks that face your business, the better prepared you will be to minimize those risks from harming your business down the road.

Risk management is essential to protect your business. Our goal at Sinclair Risk & Financial Management is not only to help our clients transfer risk, prevent losses, and to be there when losses do occur, but also to control costs. With Sinclair, you gain a partner whose experience and insight will help you manage your insurance costs and increase profitability. Contact us today for more information.

Why is Fine Art Collection Insurance So Important?

Why is Fine Art Collection Insurance So Important?Why is Fine Art Collection Insurance So Important?

In a recent blog post we covered Sotheby’s auction of Edvard Munch’s “The Scream.” The pop culture icon and fine art masterpiece made history as the most expensive work ever sold at an auction at $119.9 million.

Extensive measures were taken in weeks preceding the auction. During public viewings, the artwork sat under glass seven feet behind stanchions and watched by security guards. Even at a private reception for collectors, Sotheby’s confiscated viewers champagne before they could even approach the work.

The record breaking sale and extreme precautions Sotheby’s took is a reminder of the fragility and priceless value of fine art. It is absolutely essential as a fine art collector that you take steps to ensure the pieces in your beautiful collection.

First, find out what your existing insurance covers. Standard homeowner’s policies typically have a limit that won’t cover the extent of your collection. You should regularly have your collection appraised over time. It may be the case that several artists you have collected became increasingly celebrated over the years; this can cause the value of your collection to grow considerably.

Typically, your collection will require a Fine Arts Floater policy. Typically one of the most overlooked aspects of a financial program, for true asset protection, a Fine Arts Floater Insurance program should be integrated into your policy for complete coverage and peace of mind.

When insuring your collection, it is essential to find an insurer who specializes in high-net-worth individuals, and have expertise in insuring art. At Sinclair Risk and Financial Management, our Private Client Group Services covers a range of insurance policies to protect your lifestyle, from exotic cars to fine jewelry and high value homes. We have staff with years of experience in insuring fine art pieces; they can expertly evaluate your fine art assets to recommend the right coverage and limits. Contact us today for more information.

*Note – The painting in the picture is not a destroyed painting. It is actually a piece by Valerie Hegarty. She creates unique works of art that look like burned, smashed, cracked, warped, melted, and damaged paintings.

What Is Wine Collection Insurance & Why Do I Need it?

What Is Wine Collection Insurance & Why Do I Need it?What is Wine Collection Insurance & Why Do I Need it?

You come home from a vacation to find your climate-controlled wine cellar has malfunctioned. Wine bottles are uncorked from the extreme heat and fine wine is spilling all over the floor. Or you may come home to find your house has been vandalized or ransacked. Hopefully you have insurance to protect you against such risks to your home- but what about your wine collection?

Your collection faces many risks and exposures that a homeowner’s policy doesn’t always cover. Breakage is the most common liability for wine collections. Fire, flood, theft, and in-transit (the shipping of wine from place to place) are other sources of liability.

A lesser known area of specialty coverage, wine collection insurance is essential to protecting your investment, especially large collections. Ideally, a wine collection, like fine art and jewelry, should be separately insured against mishaps such as fire, breakage and theft.

There are several options available to insure you get the best protection possible for your collection. Most policies limit values for temperature change and other losses to $10,000. At Sinclair Risk & Financial Management, we have programs that can insure collections worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.

In insuring your collection, it is important to get coverage that covers a wide number of perils. You can choose a blanket coverage option to cover your entire collection under one limit, itemized coverage for your more valuable wines, or a combination of the two options.

Sinclair’s Private Client Group division works with several clients who have an extensive wine collection in their home. We understand the value of such a collection and the need for specialized insurance. We also work with insurance companies and wine experts to offer comprehensive wine protection insurance programs that include not only securing the proper insurance coverages but also implementing effective loss control services and inventory systems. Contact us today for more information.

Manufacturing Insurance: Technology Helps Grow Manufacturer Industry

Manufacturing Insurance: Technology Helps Grow Manufacturer IndustryThe U.S. manufacturing market saw a more bullish upturn in the first quarter of 2012. According to the latest Manufacturing Barometer survey released by PwC, some 68% of the manufacturers said the U.S. economy was growing up 40 points from the fourth quarter of 2011. Industry Week gave a summary of the results:

Despite the fact that many manufacturers faced higher costs, 43% were able to raise prices and 45% reported improved gross margins. Overall, they estimated that their revenues would grown an average of 5.6%. Growth in particular sectors such as energy, aerospace and automotive caused manufactures to take a renewed interest in the U.S. market.

“In spite of exposure to increased costs globally, industrial manufacturers generated margin growth in the first quarter as they continued to benefit from operating efficiencies and improved pricing flexibility. This uptick in profit levels bodes well for investment spending as companies put their cash to work in the coming months,” Barry Misthal, global industrial manufacturing leader for PwC told Industry Week.

The survey also addressed the growing influence of digital technology in the manufacturing industry. According to the PwC survey, 91% of manufacturers believe technology is important to achieve their companies’ objectives. 98% have used technology to improve business performance, especially in manufacturing processes, supply chain/distribution and business intelligence and reporting.

Furthermore, seven out of ten manufacturers said they view digital change as crucial to the growth of their business in the next 1-2 years, and over half of manufacturers are creating or revising business models to address new commerce and communication demands with consumers.

Sinclair Risk and Financial Management has more than four decades helping clients understand the risks associated with their manufacturing operations and designing a customized risk management plan to protect the future of your organization. We provide a wide range of solutions for your insurance needs, including both traditional and custom products. Contact us today for more information.

Fine Art Insurance: Sotheby’s Auctioning Edvard Munch’s ‘The Scream’

Fine Art Insurance: Sotheby's Auctioning 'The Scream'Edvard Munch’s “The Scream” is being auctioned off by Sotheby’s for the first time in history.

“The Scream” will be on the block at Sotheby’s on May 2nd as the highlight of the Impressionist and modern evening sale in New York. Experts have estimated that the work will fetch more than 80 million- it is the highest presale figure the auction house has ever set.

The event marks a rare opportunity for Sotheby’s. Top clients have visited the picture privately. Sotheby’s sent the work to multiple private homes in Asia, North America and Europe so key clients could test whether the haunting image clashed with the rest of their art collections. The piece was even removed from its frame for a serious contender who wanted to stare at the work nose-to-nose.

Certain international collectors have been surrounded by buzz. Among them, Geneva-based billionaire Lily Safra, who spent 104.3 million for Alberto Giacometti’s sculpture, “Walking Man I,” or American cosmetics executive Ronald Lauder, who paid 135 million in the private acquisition of Gustav Klimt’s “Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I” for his New York museum, according to the Wall Street Journal. Art-industry experts hypothesize that “The Scream” would more likely draw interest from clients with broad taste in blockbuster art.

The Wall Street Journal describes the painting as an “androgynous wraith grasping its cheeks in dread along an Oslo fiord.” Created by the Nowegian artist Munch in 1895, the painted is famous for the pop-culture parodies it has inspired as well as its artistry. The work being auctioned by Sotheby’s is one of four versions created, and the only one not in an Oslo museum.

More than 7,500 people viewed the piece last month over five days at Sotheby’s in London. Extensive precautions have been taken; during the public viewing the artwork sat under glass 7 feet behind stanchions, watched by security guards. Even at private reception for collectors, Sotheby’s took the careful step of confiscating viewers champagne before allowing them to approach the work.

Timeless pieces such as “The Scream” are valued for their artistic, historic, and cultural experience. As a fine art owner, you want to protect every beautiful piece you acquire. A Fine Arts Floater is often one of the most important, yet most overlooked, aspects of an overall financial program. At Sinclair Risk and Financial Management, we’ve got the art of risk management covered. If you are an owner of fine art, we’d like to discuss how to protect your investment for the next generation and beyond. Contact us today for more information.

Update: Edvard Munch’s ‘The Scream’ was sold to an anonymous buyer for $119.9 million.

Restaurant Business: Decorating Mistakes to Avoid

Restaurant Business: Decorating Mistakes to AvoidAs a restaurant owner, you want to create a unique, optimal dining experience for your customer that extends from the food to the atmosphere. It is the first impression a customer gets when they arrive and it can make or break their first impression. Here are tips to create the exact ambiance you want in your restaurant, and avoid traditional pitfalls.

Bad lighting. How a room is lit can make or break a diner’s experience. There is a fine line to balance in lighting; you want to make sure it is bright enough to read the menu easily, but not so bright that the light becomes harsh and unflattering.

Seating section. Having a private room or at least an areas sectioned off for large parties is a draw for groups looking host anything from family reunions to business meetings- and it’s a great opportunity to boost your income.

Temperature. No one ever likes to keep their coat on for dinner- being cold can mar a customer’s experience. Keep the dining area set at room temperature for optimum comfort level.

Music. This of course varies on your establishment (if you own a bar it will be slightly different). But in most dining places, the music should be a complementary addition to the dining experience, not the main focus. It should barely be noticed, but fit the theme of the restaurant.

Mismatched Décor. Make your theme cohesive and unified. If the building has changed hands in the past, make sure to remove any signs that there was an establishment before you. It will provide a more unique, enjoyable eating experience for your guests.

Sinclair Risk and Financial Management has innovative insurance and risk management solutions for the restaurant business. Our staff is knowledgeable about the specific issues that affect your establishment. We will craft a comprehensive insurance program that fits your needs. Contact us today for more information.