Pizza Expo Podcast Episode 3: Wes Kronberg

September 07, 2021

Pizza Expo Podcast Episode 3: Wes Kronberg - Incredible Bags

[00:00:01.010] - Rev and Eric

Welcome back to who's at Expo. We're in the Marqii both. We're here with Wes from, you're from what? Fayetteville? No.


[00:00:07.680] - Wes

Fort Smith, Arkansas.


[00:00:10.754] - Rev and Eric

Fort Smith, Arkansas.


[00:00:11.150] - Wes

Yeah. It's in the United States.


[00:00:12.160] - Wes

How many expos have you been to?


[00:00:13.560] - Rev and Eric

I've been coming since the '03. So it's probably, 12ish


[00:00:18.190] - Rev and Eric

Wow. I think you're more than anybody else we've talked to.


[00:00:20.830] - Rev and Eric

Yeah. Yeah.


[00:00:21.490] - Wes

A bunch of them.


[00:00:22.020] - Rev and Eric

What, what are you seeing different this year that you haven't seen a lot of?


[00:00:25.000] - Wes

Well, aside from it being smaller?


[00:00:26.200] - Rev and Eric



[00:00:27.100] - Wes

That's the biggest thing I've seen. But I understand, Covid is still on everybody's mind, so and I know a few of the exhibitors and they chose not to come because they're coming in the spring and it's expensive to come this far.


[00:00:41.370] - Rev and Eric



[00:00:41.730] - Wes

So, I get that, it's a business.


[00:00:44.040] - Rev and Eric

I think some people are also doing the thing in October, in Atlantic City.


[00:00:47.350] - Wes

Yeah, right.


[00:00:48.420] - Rev and Eric

A lot of plant based meat toppings. Do you think those work at Jim's Razorback in Fort Smith, Arkansas?


[00:00:56.025] - Wes

Jim's Razorback pizza is using them.


[00:00:59.800] - Rev and Eric

Oh you are? You already are? Wow, trendsetter here. Also the first one to say that.


[00:01:02.750] - Rev and Eric

 What percentage of sales is that?


[00:01:04.840] - Wes

Very, very small right now.


[00:01:05.910] - Wes

But people are just now picking up that we have it. We get it out on Facebook and all that stuff, but it's a growing market. Cauliflower is the big thing. I sell 100 a week.


[00:01:18.840] - Rev and Eric

That's significant.


[00:01:20.350] - Wes

That's crazy. Yeah.


[00:01:22.060] - Rev and Eric

And what size are you doing? Like, a 12?


[00:01:23.590] - Wes

10 inch.


[00:01:25.180] - Rev and Eric

And I see a lot of those people are doing either a 10 or a 12 inch but they're charging, like a 14 inch price, I mean you get a premium making for it. Are you making good money on it? I know they're expensive but...


[00:01:33.610] - Wes

I don't charge a premium for mine. I actually charge the same price I charge for all my other pizza's. My strategy there is that. Hey, they want it. I've got it. I'll sell it. Maybe I don't make as much today, but they buy more, so.


[00:01:46.490] - Rev and Eric

Right, right. So we're in the Marqii booth. Are you a Marqii customer? I thought...


[00:01:52.000] - Wes

Yeah, since '17. I think I joined it in 2017.


[00:01:54.750] - Rev and Eric

Total trendsetter. So because we're here I thought I heard you say you use them, so what's your result? Are you happy with it? How do you see it?


[00:02:02.950] - Rev and Eric

Oh yeah, because they cover, like, 80 different sites. It's just, you know, everywhere. The job is keeping up. Make sure everything's right on there. Changing prices and everything else, it's a big job. But once you get your menu in there, then it's not really that difficult.


[00:02:24.340] - Rev and Eric

But I have to imagine that pizzerias probably change their menu frequently, adding a new topping, adding cauliflower. Price changes, you know seasonals. And it's like, well, okay, so you change it in the store. You changed it in your POS. What about everywhere else on the Internet where consumers spy.


[00:02:39.340] - Wes



[00:02:40.900] - Rev and Eric

While I was sitting here, and before you walked up, I was listening to them talk to a consultant, talked to somebody that walked up and they're like, "well, this is different from this". When you first did it, was there irregularities all over the Internet about your business?


[00:02:53.700] - Wes

Yes, yep.


[00:02:55.590] - Rev and Eric

Is it a quick fix? It just...


[00:02:57.180] - Wes

Yeah, it was easy, actually.


[00:02:59.250] - Rev and Eric

That's cool. Somehow this just turned into a Marqii commercial. Well, it's a great service.


[00:03:04.290] - Rev and Eric

I'm intrigued by it because number one is it's why we're sitting here. But it's just a cool thing that I think a pizza...I look at like, this, the Marqii product, a text program. If you don't have those things in your pizzeria right now, I think you're missing out.


[00:03:19.590] - Wes

Very, very much. I agree, because the digital world's out there, it's big.


[00:03:25.470] - Rev and Eric

We're all carrying this around. (Shows phone)


[00:03:26.820] - Wes



[00:03:28.440] - Rev and Eric

2021, the year restaurants are finally willing to meet their customers on a phone.


[00:03:33.170] - Rev and Eric

Right right. Any changes coming up for you in the restaurant anything new and exciting you're looking at doing?


[00:03:39.870] - Wes

You know, we want to expand our plant based options. I think we want to do that. So, aside from that, this is why we come. What's new out there? What can we do exciting? You know. Change, so, that's the beauty of Expo.


[00:03:55.690] - Rev and Eric

We were laughing, the Marqii guys and I were laughing earlier this morning. It's amazing how many people come to this and like are close minded. They don't want to talk to people, they don't wanted to be pulled into your booth. Like, are you here for free pizza? Why are you here?


[00:04:07.610] - Wes



[00:04:08.610] - Rev and Eric

Good point.


[00:04:09.270] - Wes

You do get a good bit of free pizza and all that.


[00:04:11.400] - Rev and Eric

You have to come here and be like, okay, I'm coming here to learn to see, to connect, to network. What's available? Even if it's not right for you, you should know what it is.


[00:04:19.120] - Wes

Yeah because you never know. Six months down the road, something will click. And then, yeah I really do need that.


[00:04:26.530] - Rev and Eric

I saw that. Yeah, I know where I can get that. Yeah.


[00:04:29.940] - Wes

Yeah, exactly


[00:04:30.280] - Rev and Eric

It's interesting. What do you think about being in Vegas in August? It's only, like, 1000 degrees outside.


[00:04:35.110] - Wes

Well, you know, in Fort Smith, Arkansas it's in the upper 90's, low 100's with humidity. So my son and I are both here, we're thinking, yeah, it's hot but it's nice.


[00:04:47.740] - Rev and Eric

We sat outside of a Good Pie last night, and it was like, my wife was like, "wasn't it hot?" And I was like yeah, it was kind of like sitting in a hair dryer but we weren't sweating.


[00:04:55.830] - Wes



[00:04:58.800] - Rev and Eric

I was like, I really wanted pizza, so.


[00:05:01.390] - Wes

Yeah, we ate a lot of pizza here, too.


[00:05:02.860] - Rev and Eric



[00:05:03.700] - Rev and Eric

So, we're here in August. Are you going to turn around and come back in March again?


[00:05:06.700] - Wes

Oh yeah, definitely. So I got my son hooked on it now. It's his first time but he said "oh yeah", so he has to go every year now. And I want to go anyway so. It's a lot of fun.


[00:05:17.260] - Rev and Eric

How many have you been to?


[00:05:19.920] - Rev and Eric

I've been to eight or nine. I didn't go every year.


[00:05:24.220] - Rev and Eric

It's my first.


[00:05:24.361] - Wes

Ah, okay. Yeah.


[00:05:24.790] - Rev and Eric

8 or 9 over the course of 20 years for me. Still go every couple of years or whatever. But I hadn't been in a couple of years. I haven't been since '18, I think.


[00:05:33.060] - Rev and Eric

Most people haven't.


[00:05:34.310] - Rev and Eric

Well, but they had one in '19, didn't they?


[00:05:40.321] - Wes

Yeah, yes.


[00:05:40.330] - Rev and Eric

So they had one in '19 but I didn't come to that one.


[00:05:40.330] - Rev and Eric

But what do you think is really different this year? Like, what are you seeing that's different?


[00:05:45.600] - Wes

You know, I don't know, just the new stuff that's out there. So that's why I come, so that I can find this stuff. And also, you come across people that you've met in the past. I joined Big Dave Ostrander, who's the pizza guy, I joined his insight group in '03. And so I just went to a seminar, and both those guys were all part of that group. So after they had the seminar, I talked to them, and it's pretty neat to hear stories about Big Dave and Bill Marvin. And it's just neat. Connecting with all these people.


[00:06:25.140] - Rev and Eric

I think we said, we talked about this yesterday, but it's like, I know all these people, but I've never met them. Like I've never been face to face to like you two.


[00:06:33.630] - Rev and Eric

He walks up and thinks we're giants.


[00:06:36.530] - Wes

I'm short.


[00:06:37.710] - Rev and Eric

But you're big now. Look, you're sitting in the big chair.


[00:06:41.641] - Wes

I'm almost as tall as you guys!


[00:06:41.650] - Rev and Eric

Well, that's because we gave you the high seat.


[00:06:42.640] - Rev and Eric

Well hey, don't want to take up too much time, we know you got stuff to do. Thank you. Great to see you. Great to meet you.


[00:06:47.270] - Wes

So good to meet you guys! And I'll see you on the...


[00:06:49.310] - Rev and Eric

We'll see you at the mastermind for sure.


[00:06:52.010] - Rev and Eric

Thank you.


[00:06:53.250] - Wes

Thank you so much.