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Wednesday’s Top 5: Keys to a Successful Opening

It seems like every week we hear about new openings from First Watch, the breakfast and lunch restaurant chain based in Bradenton. Recently we included news about the company’s plans to open its first restaurant in Knoxville, Tenn., adding to its total of more than 100 locations in 15 states. We asked Chris Tomasso, chief marketing officer, for his top five keys to a successful opening.

1. “Location, location, location. Look for real estate sites that maximize traffic and visibility whenever possible (even if it costs more).”

2. “Be flexible. It’s a fluid process. Be able to adapt quickly and think creatively to solve unforeseen problems that arise along the way.”

3. “Don’t open until you are ready. It’s better to open well than open fast. As the saying goes, ‘You only get one opportunity to make a first impression,’ and word of mouth spreads fast.”

4. “Hire good people and train them well.”

5. “Never lose sight of why you’re opening in the first place—to deliver an exceptional experience.”

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