Causely Blog


How This Franchise Co-Owner Connects with His Customers Daily


Sam Schaffer, Director of Operations and Co-Owner of Newk’s Eatery in Lexington KY, has spent his entire life in hospitality and has a passion for serving and connecting with his guests. When Sam discovered Causely, he found a unique way to connect with guests inside and outside the restaurant. 

The Challenges of Running a Restaurant

Running your own restaurant, much like guiding a white-water rafting adventure (Sam’s brief job during college) requires many skills in many areas. You have to be boss, trainer, community builder, marketer, customer service expert, finance guy, and coordinator, all in one.

For Sam, the “marketer” role has been his biggest challenge. He has handed out fliers at local colleges, gotten involved with the local community and the chamber of commerce, and built thousands of personal relationships to help spread the word about Newk’s. “Relationships in the community are key for making a small marketing budget work. But are difficult to track,” said Sam.

Relationships in the communit are key for making a small marketing budget work

All Sam’s efforts certainly helped, but took time and were nearly impossible to sustain with a small budget. And, after all, he’s just one guy. Plus, the restaurant needed him there, not out in the community. What Sam needed was a simple solution for building relationships within the restaurant and then spreading the word outside the restaurant. 

Social Media Nurtures Hundreds of Relationships at Once

So, how do you build better relationships with current customers and then connect with people who aren’t in the restaurant?

The answer is social media. 

Sam knew that social media was the common denominator of people inside and outside his restaurant. “I wanted to find a way to touch customers outside of the restaurants as well as inside. Social media was top of mind for us,” said Sam. That’s when he learned about Causely.

Not so surprisingly, he heard about Causely from one of his regular customers! The more he learned about the thousands of other business partnering with Causely, he knew it was a natural fit. Causely helped businesses engage customers by tying their interactions on social media to charitable giving.

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Every time one of his customers checked in at Newk’s, it generated a donation to a cause. Causely provided the content and tools to communicate the program to guests and encourage them to check in, as well as a tracking platform to measure impressions on social media.

It was the perfect way to do good, connect with customers, and advertise the restaurant. “It seemed like a quick and easy way to drive people to our Facebook page and engage customers outside the restaurant,” said Sam.


Capturing People’s Attention is Easy. Just Talk.

Sam started the program right away, excited to present the new program to his staff and guests. Since Causely provided him with the resources he needed to train his staff and engage his customers, the launch process went smoothly and he was up and running immediately.

“Customized table-toppers and staff training have been the most effective for encouraging people to check-in at Newk’s,” said Sam. “With Causely, I can train my staff to break the ice with customers by walking around and talking about our easy charitable giving program. Everyone can connect to charity.”

Training his staff about the program and giving them a reason to engage guests when serving food and clearing tables has been vital to Newk’s success with Causely. “The staff mentions the program when people order, the guests see the table-toppers while waiting to be served, and staff mentions the program again when they bring the food. It’s so simple, ” said Sam.

Spending Little, Reaching Thousands

Besides being a great way to build relationships with current customers, Causely provides a unique advertising benefit. As more people check-in on Facebook and Instagram, more and more people see Newk’s brand attached to people in the community. With Causely, check-ins work as personal recommendations. 

Since starting Causely, Sam has seen a rise in foot traffic as well as a massive increase in Facebook impressions. Every month, thousands of people are seeing the Newk’s brand.


Establishments like Newk’s typically get 30,000-40,000 impressions per month with Causely. If a business reaches 30,000 people with Causely’s Partner Plan (priced at $140), it costs them $0.046 per impression.

But the best part is that each check-in helps someone in need. “Causely has a value attached to your dollars spent. For such a low investment, you get such a big return for the amount of people you’re affecting,” said Sam.

Sam Does So Much With Something So Easy

“In one word, Causely means connection,” said Sam. “I can engage my guests not only whenever they’re inside my restaurant, but whenever they’re outside the restaurant. It also ties Newk’s brand with a good cause and makes people talk about us. So, we’re advertising ourselves, but we’re also doing something so awesome with something that’s so easy. “