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National Restaurant Association - 2015 Meeting

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Marketing Executives Group

Chicago:  May 13 - 15, 2015

Highly regarded as one of the most dynamic marketing conferences in the restaurant industry, MEG gathers marketing leaders together to share insights and hear from respected speakers from both inside and outside the industry.  Register by May 1st to secure your spot!

Download the agenda


May 13 - 15, 2015
Westin Michigan Avenue
Chicago, IL 

Registration is open only to individuals directly employed by an operating restaurant company; or, if the restaurant company outsources its marketing functions, the attendee must be the sole provider of marketing services and programs to an operating restaurant that does not employ its own marketing staff.  

$495 NRA Members / $995 Non-Members

If you'd like to receive information about 2015 sponsorship opportunities, please contact Gretchen Paules at gpaules@noodles.com or Julia Kanouse at jkanouse@restaurant.org

Thank you to our Platinum Sponsors:  Heartland Payment Systems, Restaurant Marketing Labs, Rich Products, SMG and Southeastern Mills

Wednesday, May 13
  • 4:00 - 7:00:  Registration
  • 5:30 - 6:00:  Freshman (First Timers) Welcome
  • 6:00 - 8:00:  Opening Reception sponsored by Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute and Kikkoman
Thursday, May 14
  • 7:30 - 8:30:  Networking Breakfast sponsored by the North Carolina Sweet Potato Commission
  • 8:30 - 9:30:  Welcome & Introductions
  • 9:30 - 10:45:  Peter Shankman, Zombie Loyalists.  Imagine a world where relationships are forged, sales are made and new and repeat business is diven, all by the customers you currently have.  Welcome to the world of a Zombie Loyalist, customers who when treated well, will do your PR and Marketing for you, automatically, every time.  Book sponsored by InMoment.
  • 10:45 - 11:15:  Networking Break sponsored by the California Milk Advisory Board and National Mango Board.
  • 11:15 - 12:15:  Buzzed About Brands.  Hear from brands that are generating excitement among consumers and the industry.  They will share the strategies, programs and tactics that garnered their brand buzz.
  • 12:15 - 1:30:  Networking Lunch sponsored by Barilla and SROriginals 
  • 1:30 - 2:15:  Menu Labeling.  What you need to know and what you need to do comply with the FDA's menu labeling regulations. 
  • 2:15 - 3:15:  Digital Marketing Best Practices.  Listen in as Coca-Cola and Fishbowl present the results of their proprietary research study on digital marketing.  Over a hundred and fifty restaurant CMOs and vice-presidents of marketing were surveyed to understand how they are deploying digital strategies and tactics today.  Get the insight you need to help put your digital strategy on the right path. 
  • 3:15 - 3:45:  Networking Break sponsored by the California Avocado Commission and the American Lamb Board with Superior Farms Lamb
  • 3:45 - 4:15:  Felicia Stingone, The Undisciplined Discipline.   As the former head of marketing for Union Square Hospitality and a partner at Cheif Marketing Partners, Felicia will provide insights on to develop, organize and position your marketing department for success.
  • 4:15 - 5:30:  Walter Bond, Boosting Peak Performance. As an athlete, Walter spent his college days as the Sixth Man on the University of Minnesota basketball team where he learned two key things:  1) the importance of being a catalyst and 2) the discipline needed to execute his dream of being in the NBA.  Walter will share his journey and the lessons he learned along to help make you and your operation more impactful, more purposeful and, ultimately, more successful. 
  • 7:00:  Dinner
Friday, May 15
  • 7:45 - 8:45:  Networking Breakfast sponsored by the Idaho Potato Commission
  • 8:45 - 9:00:  Welcoming Remarks
  • 9:00 - 10:15:  Jim KnightCulture That Rocks.  A training and development expert for 30+ years, Jim lead the School of Hard Rocks at Hard Rock International.  While at Hard Rock, Jim focused on building company culture through its primary branding vehicle, the employees.  Join Jim to learn about marketing's role in engaging employees in the brand experience and get the tools you need to rock your organization's status quo.
  • 10:15 - 10:45:  Networking Break sponsored by California Strawberry Commission and Southern Peanut Growers
  • 10:45 - 11:45:  Melissa Marchwick, Sitter City.  As the EVP of Creative and Brand for Sitter City, Melissa will talk about the Sitter City's journey in launching Date Night Now - a tool being applauded as the "Uber of babysitting".   
  • 11:45 - 12:15:  Which Wich and Project PB&J.  A simple peanut butter and jelly sandwich can change the world.  Get the inside scoop on how Which Wich embarked on a cause marketing campaign to support Project PB&J.  And then stick around to participate in a spreading party benefiting Project PB&J after lunch.
  • 12:15 - 1:15:  Networking Lunch
  • 1:15 - 2:15:  Project PB&J Spreading Party.  In colloboration with Which Wich and Project PB&J, we are challenging our MEG attendees to create as many sandwiches as possible in one hour.
  • 2:15 - 4:30:  Sandwich Distribution.  Once we make 'em, it's time to share 'em.  Help us load the trucks and, if you are part of the winning team that makes the most sandwiches, ride along to help distribute to a group in need.

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