🐓Pricing Chicken Parm

Value to a customer has two components; perceived and relative. It’s all about where I look and what I compare it to.

One way to deliver more value without more cost is to highlight what else is important and reframe what comes to mind.

Keith Harmon talked with Aaron Watson about how restaurant pricing applies these two principles. When Harmon operated a farm-to-table restaurant, the chicken-parmesan ingredients cost about $6.60 which led to a menu price of $22.00.

This, Harmon said, “is a terrible price point for chicken-parm.”


“For the most part customers fall into two groups of people. The first group is those who love chicken-parm and are getting it no matter what. The second group is those who planed on getting something slightly less than twenty dollars but stretch their expectations. Now that chicken-parm is in a tough position, because it has to be the best chicken-parm they've every had."

Unlike adding something easy to count, it’s hard to quantify cage-free-livin’. Pushing the price also shifts the comparison.

It didn’t work well for Harmon. Knowing that only economic models in textbooks have linear relationships, Harmon raised the price. "We moved our price to twenty-eight dollars and got fewer complaints and sold more."

Like a piece of direct mail, a social media post, or in-store display, price conveys information and not always in a way we may think.

Harmon also talked about the JTBD of a restaurant and his enthusiasm echoed what Dave Grohl wrote.