Thought balloon at Fruition Farms aging room: “I need a bowl of hot elbow macaroni and a grater.” (Photo by Hans Lehndorff)
By John Lehndorff
Once upon a time (which was not so long ago), restaurants and other food businesses only needed to mail out a handful of press releases to food writers, critics and media to attract attention. Today’s chefs, caterers and bakery owners now face a complex digital landscape littered by blogs, video posts, Instagram, Twitter, You Tube, Pinterest as well as conventional media. Everybody wants them to advertise. They or someone on their staff often has to be the press contact, photographer and mobile-friendly social media director. In their spare time they face maintaining a website and cope with a Yelp-ing environment where every person who buys a croissant is a critic and food stylist.
I’m offering my first workshop Oct. 11 at the Boulder Book Store in Food Writing for Food Professionals. As a former food editor (Daily Camera), dining critic (Rocky Mountain News), and author (“Denver Dines”), I have had a front row seat for the digital transformation of media including being laid off three times. I have been on the receiving end of 12 billion press releases verbally, on the phone, by fax, e-mail, text, post, DVD and print. It seems like more than that.
Over the past four decades I’ve had the honor of organizing events and publicizing local and national events including the Taste of the Nation benefits in Boulder, the Great American Pie Festival and the Flatirons Food Film Festival. I have also helped my radio station, KGNU-FM, with on-air fundraising with the aid of the restaurant community. I know what it’s like to send press releases and phone calls into the void and get absolutely no response.
The workshop for food professionals will offer an overview of the Colorado food media world with practical tips about successfully creating a community and buzz for a taste-focused business. I’ll cite great examples of food business outreach and list the Top 10 things you should never do. Mainly, I’ll answer questions about blogging, phone food photography, writing recipes, menu language and anything else attendees want to discuss.
My gigs? I write the Nibbles blog, host Radio Nibbles, post on the Nibbles Facebook page, and write stories for myriad publications including the Daily Camera, Cheese Connoisseur Magazine, Colorado AAA EnCompass Magazine, Produce Business Magazine and many others. I have produced restaurant related content and dining directories for the City of Aurora, Visit Denver and Vail Beaver Creek Magazine.
A former restaurant cook, caterer and cooking teacher, I know what it’s like on the inside of the kitchen.
Little known fact: Some people only know me as a pie expert (google “John Lehndorff pie”). Some people only know me as a music critic (Google “John Lehndorff bluegrass”).
If you have questions about the workshop, e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org