PROFILE

Richard J. George, Ph.D.

Professor of Food Marketing, Haub School of Business, Saint Joseph's University

Dr. Richard J. George is Professor Emeritus of Food Marketing at the Haub School of Business, St. Joseph’s University, where he earned his undergraduate degree in economics. He holds an MBA from Harvard University, and a Ph.D. from Temple University. He has authored or co-authored eleven books including Winning Customer Rules and Winning Marketing Strategy: The Rules.  He has also been recognized with several awards for teaching and research excellence, including the prestigious Lindback and Tengelmann Awards.   As an entrepreneur he has learned the need to “walk the walk” and not simply “talk the talk.” He was one of nineteen professors nationwide named as their favorite undergrad business professor and profiled by Business Week in a feature titled “Class Acts.”  In 2014 he was voted by students as the “Top Prof” in the Haub School of Business.  He has lived and taught in England at the University of London and in Ireland at the University College Cork.

As an expert on food marketing strategy, brand strategy, business ethics, marketing strategy, customer delight, marketing trends, and servant leadership, he has been quoted by major news organizations and industry publications worldwide. He has spoken on these topics in the Americas, Eastern and Western Europe, and the Pacific Rim.  Articles on these topics have appeared in the European Journal of Marketing, Journal of Consumer Marketing, Journal of Food Products Marketing, Journal of Marketing Management, Adweek, Grocery Headquarters, Marketing News, the International Review of Retail Distribution and Consumer Research, the Journal of Negro Education, and the Journal of Business Ethics.

Dr. George has spent his entire professional career in the development of people.  Over the course of his career, with his speeches in the U.S. and internationally, he has reached tens of thousands of students and food marketing industry leaders.  He is the previous holder of the Gerald E. Peck Fellowship, working on a project for the International Foodservice Distributors Association (IFDA).  The objective of the IFDA research project was to enhance collaboration between foodservice manufacturers and distributors.  Previously, he held the fellowship sponsored by FMI during which he produced three published research reports focusing on the future of food wholesaling.

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  • Posted on: 11/15/2019

    Walmart has a too much grocery problem

    Walmart has invested & innovated such that these grocery sales results are to be expected. Recall, the logic behind Supercenters, namely having grocery aisles placed horizontally versus traditional supermarkets with vertical aisles. Every time you turn a grocery aisle, the plan was to lead you into higher margin non-grocery aisles. However, these transition middle store aisles have failed to capture the grocery shopper’s attention. Walmart needs to rethink what the transition assortments should be and once selected, merchandise them well. Walmart has the shopper visits, now is the time to upsell.
  • Posted on: 11/12/2019

    Amazon confirms it will open a grocery store not named Whole Foods

    Amazon has learned from both its Whole Foods and Amazon Go operations. Now it sees mainstream grocery as the next logical step in its efforts to become the leading grocery retailer. Walmart and Target will certainly take notice. However more traditional supermarkets who thus far tended to dismiss Amazon, citing Whole Foods as a specialty retailer and Amazon Go as a convenience store, need to up their ante in light of this latest Amazon move.
  • Posted on: 11/11/2019

    Why is Trader Joe’s hiding stuffed animals in its stores?

    A terrific way to get the children involved in the grocery shopping experience. Plus, it adds a dimension of fun to an otherwise boring shopping outing. The key is to engage today’s children who will become tomorrow’s Trader Joe’s shoppers. Great example of a low cost, high return (present and future) tactic.
  • Posted on: 11/05/2019

    Is Amazon starting to fall out of favor with American consumers?

    I wouldn't be too quick to bury Amazon. While Walmart and Target have done a very good job of replicating Amazon's efforts, Amazon continues to innovate. I do believe that "clicks and mortar" provides a benefit to Walmart and Target; despite Amazon's Whole Foods option, which to date has been problematic for Amazon. This holiday season will provide a better snapshot of Amazon's relationship with its customers.
  • Posted on: 11/01/2019

    Survey says consumers want online orders shipped fast and free

    Yes and yes. Like the cat who tasted fresh tuna there is no going back to canned tuna.
  • Posted on: 10/30/2019

    Will free deliveries for Prime members make Amazon the driving force in online grocery?

    Amazon’s mantra has always been to seek “first mover advantage.” Free deliveries for Prime members is the latest such effort. However, as noted by other panelists, profitability will be a challenge. Plus, this strategy does not address the BOPIS issues associated with Whole Foods. Independent and regional chains need to gird for the impact of this change as it is responded to by Walmart and Target.
  • Posted on: 10/29/2019

    When customers think Casey’s, will they think community?

    Casey’s should be applauded for its community focused endeavors. Its efforts mirror those of Wawa, a leading regional C-store with over 800 locations. Wawa welcomes its customers to the Neighborhood. It states, “...we don’t have customers. We have neighbors. And being a good neighbor is part of who we are.” In addition to the Wawa Foundation, the company is involved in neighborhood issues like Autism, Down Syndrome, Juvenile Diabetes, Breast Cancer and many more deserving charities. However, for these events Wawa does not simply donate needed refreshments, it sends teams of associates, who volunteer their time for the good of their neighbors. Wawa is akin to the neighborhood stores that towns once enjoyed. People refer to their neighborhood store as "My Wawa," a term that best describes a unique relationship. C-stores all have this potential to be the neighborhood hub if you perceive your customers as neighbors, not simply customers.
  • Posted on: 10/28/2019

    What will drive food trends for 2020?

    Like others, I agree that CBD products are a big omission. Regenerative agriculture is spot on. Related is the trend of sustainability. Likewise, packaging innovations, less is more & true recyclable/compostable packaging materials will become more mainstream.
  • Posted on: 10/25/2019

    What makes a great assistant store manager?

    Indeed a good list. I would add the ability of the assistant store manager to be empowered, namely to make decisions without the need to "check" with the store manager first. Another is to never stop investing in people development. You train animals and develop people. Understand and develop the additional skills and talents necessary for the assistant store manager to seamlessly become a store manager.
  • Posted on: 10/17/2019

    Will debt-free college make Chipotle the place to work in the restaurant biz?

    As a University Professor & former University College dean, I applaud the efforts of Chipotle to help its employees earn their college degrees. We have all heard the stories about college tuition debt. However, this program appears to support students who did not choose for economic or other reasons, to continue their education on a part time basis. This group is balancing work, family & school. Chipotle minimizes the financial burden. I perceive this as a significant differential advantage.
  • Posted on: 10/14/2019

    Is BOPIS a good fit for Dollar General?

    BOPIS is a natural fit for dollar stores in general and for Dollar General in particular. In fact, BOPIS is more attractive to smaller footprint stores. Dollar General’s 7,000 square foot stores provide for easy access and the related convenience of additional purchases; many of which will be the variety of impulse items at the front of the store. In addition, if so desired, a shopper picking up a BOPIS order could visit the entire Dollar General store in about the same time it takes to shop one aisle in a traditional supermarket or half an aisle in a supercenter. However the real advantage of BOPIS is that a customer is resetting his or her mental cash register to zero, thus giving the shopper permission to spend more money. Think of traditional supermarket shopping -- the fullness of the shopping cart is a barometer of spending. An empty cart or basket is perceived as a new start. I predict the Dollar General experiment will become a chain-wide success.
  • Posted on: 10/11/2019

    Will Sam’s Club CEO lead Walmart’s U.S. business to greater success?

    John Furner has a long history with Walmart. Some might argue that Walmart should be looking for an individual with a non-Walmart pedigree. However, Mr. Furner has earned this promotion and the company has been doing quite well as of late. Mr. Furner's challenge will be to keep the train on the track and continue with its innovative approaches as Walmart competes with Amazon and other leading retailers.
  • Posted on: 10/10/2019

    Will becoming a UPS pickup/drop off point drive craft sales at Michaels?

    Assuming the deals work financially for Michaels, the pickup/drop off option is a no-brainer. Anything that can attract new customers to your operations is a plus. In addition, it gives current customers another reason to visit Michaels. Kohl's and Walgreens have both had success with such relationships. It's similar to the no-fee ATM transactions available in Wawa convenience stores. Few people who enter the store with the goal of getting cash leave without spending something.
  • Posted on: 10/09/2019

    Will part-timers flock to Lidl after grocer offers health insurance for all?

    Flock may be a strong descriptor. However, given the recent pull back in benefits by Whole Foods, this certainly will give Lidl a much needed competitive advantage, as it attempts to grow in the US market. In addition, this benefit should attract a better talent pool, perhaps enhancing the Lidl shopping experience for its customers.
  • Posted on: 10/02/2019

    Do Carolinians have Wegmans on their minds?

    This has been a much anticipated march to the south by Wegmans, where it will be confronted by a couple of very good retailers. Harris Teeter is the region incumbent and Publix has encroached from the south. Raleigh supermarket customers are blessed to have three of the best in their market. Some of Wegmans thinking may be to slow down Publix who currently operates 13 stores in Virginia. The Wegman mantra like the Publix mantra, not only follows, but also precedes their arrival into new markets.

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