Relationship Marketing in Practice
Christina Lin, MS, RD
Director, Food Services
Palos Verdes Peninsula USD
I was pleasantly surprised to open the principal’s weekly update from my sons’ school, Peninsula High, and see a mention of a new pizza product on the school lunch menu. This is among notices of sport wins, academic scholarships, robotic team projects, and musicals. School lunch pizza made a headline!
Christina Lin, Director at Palos Verdes Peninsula is making those connections within her District. A few months later I noticed another school food mention (in a positive tone).
I asked Christina what she has been doing for outreach, as the students and principals themselves are marketing her menu items for her. Here are her responses.
Periodically attend principal’s meetings to share Food Service updates
Visit the sites and meet with principals individually
When students reach out to share feedback, I encourage them to take a leadership role. At Peninsula High, one of the leadership classes has a school meal subcommittee. They share menu ideas and are a huge help with marketing. For new menu features, I have them add announcements in the morning bulletin, school phone app, and student newspaper. (Good job Christina!)
Attend PTA meetings – They now reach out for me to give talks at Red Ribbon Week and go through FS for catering (It is nice to be wanted and part of the group!)
Attend student council meetings, even at the elementary level
Work on Social Media presence with FS Instagram and Twitter – District and principals retweet FS messages which is great
Kudos to Christina. Building those relationships takes time and effort. But in the end, it is actually a time saver, having the students and staff marketing for the department. This is how school food service earns a positive reputation.
"There is a big difference between a satisfied customer and a loyal customer. Never settle for 'satisfied'." - Shep Hyken
"Loyal customers, they don’t just come back, they don’t simply recommend you, they insist that their friends do business with you." - Chip Bell