Growing in the Face of Declining Traffic

It’s a tough fact that traffic is declining among many retail and restaurant locations. So, how do you grow? This session will stimulate your thinking into new ways to attract customers as well as to new opportunities with the ones you already have.


David Coulson | Head of Innovation | Tandem Theory

David Coulson is the Head of Innovation for Tandem Theory, an integrated, data sciences based agency in Addison, TX. A huge analytics and loyalty marketing geek, he has built best in class loyalty programs for some of the world’s top brands as well as the platforms, apps or engagements rooted in personalization that continue to increase their lifetime value with fans. Some of his past and present clients include Starbuck’s, Panera, Rent A Center, Domino’s, MGRMI, American Express, and PepsiCo. He’s an influential, creative, make-it-happen marketing leader with deep consumer and technology experience that truly loves helping brands exceed their consumer’s expectations while growing their digital footprint.

Chris Hansen | Sr. Director, Digital | TGI Fridays

Chris Hansen is Sr. Director of Digital at TGI Fridays overseeing the complete digital technology experience including eCommerce, site and app development, build-out, and maintenance. His mission is to deliver an innovative end-to-end frictionless guest user experience to all guests of Fridays. Prior to TGI Fridays, Chris spent 18 years in a variety of industry and UX positions, focused on digital design, performance analytics, strategy & implementation, to drive consumer engagement and conversion. As an additional outlet for his passion on design thinking, Chris founded, an online marketplace for product reviews & news about Jeep Wranglers.

Rachel Layton | VP of Marketing + Growth | Taziki’s Mediterranean Cafe

Rachel Layton is the Vice President of Marketing + Growth for Taziki’s Mediterranean Cafe, building sustainable growth strategies that drive sales for the company’s 90+ locations nationwide. Rachel oversees the management of the Taziki’s brand, including digital and local store marketing and was a critical force behind the launch of the company’s email marketing program, in addition to their loyalty program, TAZ Rewards. These initiatives drove an 11% increase in system same store sales. She built initiatives that increased online ordering by 80% and led a 15% increase in same store catering sales by coaching local markets in growth techniques. Additionally, Rachel manages the Taziki’s off-premise dining program which includes catering and delivery.

Julie Wade | Senior Director of Marketing | Taziki’s Mediterranean Cafe

Julie Wade is the Senior Director of Marketing for Taziki’s Mediterranean Cafe and is currently leading the brand to effectively reach guests now that buying habits of the chain’s customers in 90+ locations have changed. Using an omnichannel approach, Julie is spearheading an app and online ordering update, digital advertising efforts, third party delivery promotions, and new social media channels to interact with guests in ways not thought possible previously, while dissecting every possible guest interaction. With over 15 years of experience in retail and restaurants, Julie brings experience from operations, development, and franchising to Taziki’s. She consistently challenges the status quo and never takes, “This is how we’ve always done it,” as an acceptable answer.

Vicente Yuste | Visual Designer | H-E-B

Speaker bio coming soon!


Brandon Elliott | Sr. Director, Digital Products | HMSHost

Brandon is a first generation “digital native” who grew up with the latest technology device, game system or computer in his hands. This childhood hobby is what triggered Brandon’s life-long passion for technology and his relentless drive to create, improve, innovate and transform the way we live, work and play. Brandon specializes in information technology and is a former business owner with 24+ years of hands-on experience including engineering, development and management. He is customer centric and results driven with experience working with IT, executive management and key business personnel to bring business strategy and technology innovation together.

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