Fondue restaurant prepares to dip into cross-promotional marketing | nnbusinessview.com

Fondue restaurant prepares to dip into cross-promotional marketing

NNBW staff

The Melting Pot, a fondue-themed restaurant, plans to position itself as more than a mere eatery after it opens at Magnolia Village in southwest Reno.

The company finds that its theme lends itself to an array of cross promotions, says Reno franchise owner Eric Ponce de Leon.

Fondue, whether cheese or chocolate, is viewed as a fun concept that lends itself as a backdrop to bridal showers and ladies nights, fondue cooking classes and product showcase events.

That’s the thinking at the franchise chain’s corporate headquarters in Tampa, Fla. And corporate teaches restaurant owners such as Ponce de Leon in Reno to cultivate those outreach opportunities.

Once Melting Pot opens in February, Ponce de Leon says he’ll start scouting for local promotional partnerships. Jewelers are a good bet, he says; when a couple buys a ring, they get a dinner voucher. Promotional partners split the cost.

Once the Reno location is established, Ponce de Leon, whose franchise agreement covers a 50-mile radius of Reno, plans a second Melting Pot at Lake Tahoe. Market demographics, he says, show that Reno could not support a second location.

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After a career in manufacturing at corporate behemoths such as Colgate Palmolive, Revlon, Quaker Oats, and most recently as site director at Masterfoods USA in Reno, Ponce de Leon says he wanted to go out on his own and chose Melting Pot “because it was a unique concept.”