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National Restaurant Association - Marketing Executives Group (MEG)

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Marketing Executives Group (MEG)

Advance registration for the MEG conference will close on Wednesday, May 3. You will still be able to register for MEG on-site at the same price point. We encourage you to register early to ensure you are included in conference communications.

MEG is a community of restaurant marketing professionals who are connected 365 days a year and come together every Spring. MEG raises the level of industry excellence by connecting, inspiring, teaching and challenging each other through the exchange of ideas, thought leadership and best practices.

MEG connects individuals who serve their restaurant or hospitality industry company at the highest levels. Professionals active in MEG include Chief Executive Officers, Presidents, Marketing and Sales Officers, as well as EVPs, Vice Presidents, Directors and Managers of Brand Marketing, Corporate Communications, Creative and Marketing.

Be among some of the industry's most successful: Bd's Mongolian Grill, Bread Winner's Cafe and Bakery and The Quarter Bar, Cooper's Hawk Winery & Restaurant, Dunkin' Brands, Firehouse of America, First Watch Restaurants, Fish City Grill, Fuzzy's Taco Shop, Golden Corral, The Habit Restaurants, Inc., Lettuce Entertain You, Mellow Mushroom, Movie Tavern, Pei Wei, Polly's Inc, Sterling Hospitality, Think Food Group, Tim Hortons Inc., Topper's Pizza, Yard House, Zaxby's and many more.

We are always on the lookout for dynamic and engaging speakers. If you are interested in learning about speaking opportunities for our 2018 conference, please email NRA's subject matter expert Jaclyn Sanford at jsanford@restaurant.org.

2016 Presentations: Click here to access the presentations

Note: You will need a username & password to access the presentations. To receive a username & password, please email meetings@restaurant.org. Presentations are only available to past MEG conference attendees.

MEG Leadership

Keynote Speaker


Wednesday, May 17

2 p.m. - 6 p.m. Registration

5 p.m. - 7 p.m. Opening Event - Shatter the Ice
  Mix & mingle with friends both new & old at our opening night event.
Heavy hors d'oeuvres will be provided. *Dinner is on your own*
  Sponsored by:

Thursday, May 18

8 a.m. - 9 a.m. Breakfast

9 a.m. - 9:15 a.m. Welcome

9:15 a.m. - 10:15 a.m. Keynote Speaker - Morgan Spurlock, Academy Award-Nominated Director of Super Size Me and Host of CNN's Inside Man, Presenting "The Greatest Lecture Ever Presented"
  We live in an age where it's tough to walk down the street without someone trying to sell you something. The entire American experience now seems to be brought to us by some corporation. Utilizing the cutting-edge tools of comic exploration and total self-exploitation, Spurlock dissects the world of advertising and marketing by using his personal integrity as currency to seel out to the highest bidder. Scathingly funny, subversive, and deceptively smart, he shines the definitive light on our branded future.

10:15 a.m. - 10:45 a.m. Networking Break
  Sponsored by:

10:45 a.m. - 12:15 p.m. Roundtable Discussions
  Topics will include:
  • Internal Marketing & Your Culture
  • Effectively Partnering With/Influencing Your Franchisees
  • Engaging Suppliers in your Marketing Promotions
  • Creating the Future through Innovation
  • Marketing through your Menu
  • Target Marketing
  • Loyalty through Technology
  • Online Ordering
  • Cultivating your Marketing Calendar
  • Menu Innovation
  • Local Store Marketing
  • Data Driven Ways to Brainstorm New LTOs/Promotions

12:15 p.m. - 1:15 p.m. Lunch
  Sponsored by:

1:15 p.m. - 2:15 p.m. Taking your Promotions to the Next Level
  Speaker: Heather Schlesigner, Director, Calendar, Program & Promotions, The Krystal Company
Brands love to form alliances with other industry leaders for shared equity and funding, but more importantly, so they can blow out their promtions, accelerate awareness, and increase sales. From promotions with the National Cattleman's Beef Association to museum exhibits with TOBASCO®, Coca-Cola® and others, Schlesigner has developed calendars rich with partnerships, alliances, special funding and exceptional results. Learn how she identifies, approaches and leverages relationships to develop record-breaking sales results and how your brand can effectively become great partners with diverse organizations, building lasting relationships.

2:15 p.m. - 2:45 p.m. What Trends are on the Horizon?
  Speaker: Bev Cain, President, Sandelman
What forces are gobbling up visits hortorically served by casual dining and fast-food chains? Which consumers are lured away by these restaurant industry disrupters - and why? Cain will share new insights surround emerging chains, home meal delivery, lane migration, technological advances and C-store made-to-order offerings as well as delve into what's on the horizon for the restaurant industry.

2:45 p.m. - 3:15 p.m. Networking Break
  Sponsored by:

3:15 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. Disruption Panel

4:30 p.m. - 6 p.m. Break - Attendees On Your Own

6 p.m. - 9 p.m. Thursday Night Event
  6 p.m. - 7 p.m. - Cocktail Hour
7 p.m. - 9 p.m. - Sit-Down Dinner with Entertainment

Friday, May 19

8 a.m. - 9 a.m. Breakfast

9 a.m. - 9:30 a.m. Scholarship Winner

9:30 a.m. - 11 a.m. Commnity Service Initiative - Putting For A Purpose

11 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. Networking Break
  Sponsored by:

11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Growing a Culture of Presence
  Finding presence is our greatest unmet need. How did we get here? And what can we do about it? In this highly interactive, participatory and experiential brainstorming presentation, Blinkoff will show you how we got here and what we can do about it. But more importantly, you will start on a path to transform yourself, your work and the way your customers experience your product, services and brand.

12:30 p.m. - 1:45 p.m. Lunch
  Sponsored by:

1:45 p.m. - 3 p.m. Programming

3 p.m. - 4 p.m. Closing Keynote

2016 Spring Agenda



Early-bird: $425
After March 31: $525

Early-bird: $925
After March 31: $1,025

*Note: $25 of the paid registration fee is going towards our 2017 community service initiative - a project for No Kid Hungry.

*Restaurant operators will receive a complimentary badge to the NRA Show 2017. You will receive your NRA Show badge when you pick up your MEG conference registration packet.

Don't forget to secure your discounted hotel rate at the Fairmont Hotel. Detailed instructions on how to book your hotel room will be in your registration confirmation email, as well as on your registration confirmation page.


You will receive instructions on how to reserve a reduced-rate hotel room in your MEG registration confirmation email.
200 North Columbus Drive
Chicago, IL 60601
(312) 565-8000
We've secured a limited number of reduced-rate ($250/night + tax) hotel rooms to make your trip to MEG affordable.


United Airlines offers up to 10% off published fares to MEG attendees based on booking class. To save, book online at United.com/meetingtravel. Choose your flight times, enter "ORD" as the airport and access eligible discounts by inserting code, ZX4F230235 in the Offer Code box. Discount available for travel between May 12-26, 2017.

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