Three legit reasons my new book makes a decent gift, and two kinda bogus ones.

I just released the three-dimensional, offline form of this blog, and it’s available on Amazon (

Of course, I’ve been making like John Updike all week, inscribing these in nearly legible handwriting.
Of course, I’ve been making like John Updike all week, inscribing these in nearly legible handwriting.

Looking for gift ideas? Here’s my modest pitch for Giving The Gift of Selling Eating (a proposition made up largely of gerunds):

1. Doesn’t take much paper to wrap. It’s a typical trade-paperback sized book (unless you spring for a hardback, which is still not huge). 234 pages. So if you’re carrying a bunch of presents from the trunk to the in-laws’ tree, or trying to slide a copy into a stocking, well, this is sized perfectly for all that.

2. Looks good. Just imagine it on your nightstand with all the other books you intend to read soon—I bet your hand sort of naturally hovers over Selling Eating: Restaurant Marketing Beyond the Word “Delicious,” and without much hesitation or conscious decision-making I bet your hand chooses this one out of the stack. You can repeat that old adage about the risk of basing your judgement of a book’s merit on the appearance of its cover, but you can’t possibly mean it. Me, I have to thank Zac Neulieb for the look of the book, and Bryan Judkins for the existence of the book (and while I’m at it, I must thank my partners Paul Knapp, Tom Denari and Carolyn Hadlock for their support through the bringing of this into existence, and Adam Hoover for keeping it all on track). Zac also redesigned this blog—which I’m sure you noticed, and isn’t it great? Here’s where I also thank Kevin Wood and Jake Hamilton for all their help with the online form of SellingEating.

3. Covers restaurant marketing from every angle I could think of. After twenty or so years of doing this, I’ve observed a lot about the particulars of marketing a restaurant—what makes a menu work, why it’s foolish to proceed with no clarity about your brand, why kids are important, how to approach food photography, why research fails and how it can help, ways to think about packaging and social media and online reviews and content creation and brand voice and lots of other useful information.

4. Contains discussions with and/or endorsements by big name restaurant people you may have heard of before. The people I quote in the book are mostly people I’ve worked with or met—world class food photographer Michael Somoroff, renowned researcher Bob Drane, wise franchisee and veteran marketer Gary Reinwald. On the other hand, I have never met the people who wrote blurbs for the cover, nor Russ Klein, former Global President and CMO of Burger King, who wrote a Foreword that really kicks the book off with a bang. He and the blurbers were simply sent early copies of the book and liked it. Paul Barron, author of The Chipotle Effect, even said, “I regularly see restaurants struggle with the exact issues this book covers….Fun to read, and instructive.” Thanks, Russ. Thanks, Paul, Thanks, everyone.

5. Might be the only book I ever write, so I stuck everything into it. It’s about restaurant marketing, but it’s also about marketing in general. It’s about business in general. It’s about human behavior in general. And I think it’s kinda funny (though not clownish; no, no, not clownish), and pretty easy to read. If this is going to be the one book I write, I’m pretty proud of it.

I’ll let you decide which are the two bogus reasons to make a gift out of my book.