Who Are Our Core Customers?
Back in 1972 our founder, Tony Roma, hit on a previously untapped core customer segment when Chef David Smith threw a rack of ribs on the grill one weekend. People love to eat ribs but can’t easily get them. Making them — and making them right — is a laborious process. Tony took ribs, an entree that was previously associated with hole-in-the-wall barbecue joints, and brought them into a more upscale and family-friendly upscale casual dining concept, making them more accessible to fans around the world. Iconic brands with strong American roots are hot, especially with millennials who seek out authentic brands. The popularity of American food trends is at an all-time high outside the U.S.
Our iconic American brand conjures up a positive, emotional connection for the many people who grew up celebrating special occasions with their families at Tony Roma’s, especially in the 1970s and 1980s. Our innovative new menu features our popular items, such as our baby back ribs, Kickin’ Shrimp, Romarita® and Onion Loaf, in a more inviting restaurant space. Our menu also offers more customization, which is especially attractive to the growing millennial demographic, and is ushering in a new generation of Tony Roma’s fans. As we modernize our menu and brand, we’ve taken great care to stay true to the core DNA that built a tremendous brand affinity for Tony Roma’s over decades and took our ribs to worldwide fame.
Family fun in an upscale casual dining atmosphere
Generations of customers grew up celebrating at Tony Roma’s, and there is undeniable demand for our food — from our mouthwatering ribs that require sleeves to be rolled up and bibs to be worn to our fun signature cocktails like our Romarita®. We get comments from guests all the time who want us to open a location in their city: “We miss you; come back!” We’re not trying to be everything to everyone who visits; we want to be known as THE place for RIBS.
Consumers are driven to seek craveable food, and the deal is sealed with an amazing customer experience. If someone dines out and has a good experience, they will tell 10 people. At Tony Roma’s our servers strive to create an atmosphere full of energy and life that keeps customers coming back.
Our customer base is evenly divided between men and women, and our guests tend to be from higher-income households and have higher education levels than the typical upscale casual dining customer. Our customer base also features higher numbers of families with children – we over-index with families compared to other casual dining restaurants.