00Table 301 is a restaurant group specialized in catering services catering for companies and office buildings. Based in Greenville (South Carolina, OF. UU.), the company already has multiple successful services such as its several partner restaurants (Soby’s, The Lazy Goat, Nose Dive, Passerelle y Southern Pressed Juicery, to name a few), as well as mobility services in the form of food trucks, catering for weddings and food delivery service.
Like many other restaurants, since the beginning of 2020 things have gotten especially tricky. Given the business model of Table 301, have been less affected than other colleagues in the sector, but the economic balance of the premises leans against the owners. To overcome these difficult times, Carl Sobocinski, the founder of this interesting hospitality initiative is using the power of the networks to his advantage.
When he arrived lockdown, the main business meetings and conferences in the area had already concluded. Luck smiled at Carl, the box was full when the confinements arrived, capacity restrictions and other social distancing measures that had great and harmful effects on other restaurants in the area.
Starting from an advantageous position, Carl just had to find a way to overcome the losses caused by the downturn in economic activity.. The turnover of the Table 301 is strongly associated with companies in the area, since the services of catering that they offer from their establishment suppose a source of income not negligible. So that, it was necessary to find new corporate clients who were interested in the catering to companies offered by the restoration group.
The solution to this problem came from the hand of a event relay service combined with the shipment of ingredient kits. As if it were a television cooking show, chefs, Table cooks and kitchen assistants 301 they broadcast live the preparation of their dishes. For this they use the famous program of Zoom video conferencing, whose adoption has become viralized at high speed throughout the US. THE. at the same time that the SARS-2 and anti-contagion measures.
Cooks display the correct way in which menus are prepared, and the audience attends expectantly. They start with a kit of ingredients that viewers on the other side of the screen can also have. That is the success of the idea. At the other end of the videoconference are the workers of multinationals and large corporations of the Forbes 500 who have taken advantage of a telework plan. The companies to which they belong have established a collaboration with Table 301 through which employees receive the ingredient kit at home and then can connect to the Zoom meeting to see what are the best techniques to get the most flavor and the most out of the products received.
In what they have called «Virtual Cook-Along Dinner Series» (something like a series of virtual encounters to cook dinner together), Table 301 sends a package containing various oils to each address, will, butter and spices in the necessary portions, as well as all kinds of ingredients, from chopped vegetables to peeled shrimp, going through chicken, various tubers and even flours for coating.
According to Carl Sobocinski, the idea is not my own, rather it is a failed concept of another guildmate, that with a few twists of the screw has become a winning idea. Specific, Carl tells Restaurant Business that "The idea stems from a large canceled local funding campaign that took place in April.", shortly after knowing the initial failure, he was already immersed in his own initiative. «200 people bought tickets, the event was prepared in Zoom, and the boxes with ingredients were sent to each participant ».
The goddess Fortuna smiled at Carl again, since among the spectators who gathered at his event there were several important positions from renowned companies. A Michelin executive and a local hospital boss were surprised by Carl's idea and wanted to bring this experience of social restoration to their businesses. With this great initial success, Table 301 had much of the work done.
From that moment, Carl and his team focused on projecting their new business model as much as possible. For this, social networks were of great help, especially Instagram Y Facebook, for its good compatibility with the photographic material they took during the joint cooking sessions. At the same time, word of mouth took the initiative even further, reaching out to new tycoons who, again, they opened the door to Carl and his team.
The excessive growth of the proposal did not take long to have very positive economic and social results. Some workers that Carl had had to lay off due to the monetary difficulties caused by the coronavirus crisis were able to return to the restaurant and in this way Sobocinski put the stove in his kitchen at full throttle.
The corporate clients that Sobocinski has managed to capture with its innovative cooking show pay so that their employees can enjoy the experience. The cost for these large companies is usually around from 40 a 100 dollars for each event and person, Although some packages whose content includes luxury products may exceed this price and it is always possible to choose to pair the menu of the day with a bottle of wine à la carte for around 20 additional $.
The broadcast took place first by Zoom, but since they started broadcasting their cooking show they have also gone to Facebook Live, that allows them to have a much greater reach. They spice up the audiovisual material with competitions, company employees can send photos of their finished dishes to get the award for the best prepared dish. The struggles between coworkers to get this award are fiercer than they should.
Most importantly, this method allows Table 301 overcome the vicissitudes that the coronavirus crisis has brought with it, and it does so by putting a grain of sand in society with its light-hearted cooking classes, dynamic, fluid and fun, that offer a space to socialize and forget about problems in these moments of so much social distancing and uncertainty.