>Keno hits Ohio

>Today marks the first day for Keno in the state of Ohio in over 700 locations. Pretty much anywhere that you can buy alcohol, sit on a bar stool and watch the Indians win (or lose) is taking part in this online bingo-like gambling game.

What does Ohio get out of it? An estimated $73 million… IN THE FIRST YEAR ALONE.

Where does the rest of the money go? a little over 6% of sales goes to each individual “Keno vendor,” plus their bonuses. This could result in splitting a whopping $18 million the first year. The rest of the money then goes to the winners and the state coffers.

Forget some magical solution to saving the economy – we’ve got Keno now!

This is Ohio’s way of “legalizing” gambling since we have, as a state, rejected it three times since 1990. (Hey, don’t yell at me, I voted for it!)

Hopefully it will help. Anything will at this point.

But, have you have noticed the advertising of Keno? I sure haven’t. Does this strike anyone else as odd?

-k

>Feel the burn

>
It has been only a few weeks since FedEx Corp. decided to drop the Kinko’s name and go by “FedEx Office” instead in hopes to win more large business customers. What’s the cause for this refocus? Gas prices.

Now, UPS is reportedly feeling the same pressures from the slow economy and rising fuel costs. UPS announced yesterday they are cutting their profit outlook in the second quarter in better preparation for what may happen.

In bringing it full circle, according to our survey, when times are troubled for your company, you should spend more on marketing dollars. It will be interesting to see what FedEx Office and UPS will do with marketing in the next few quarters.

>The (mini) results are in

>It is no surprise our readers are unique, but that is why we like you. According to the respondants of our marketing and economic survey thus far, most of you will be spending less than or the same amount of marketing dollars during this economy. According to a recent survey by infoUSAPoll.com, sixty-six percent of small business owners will spend more or the same on marketing dollars.

Unhappy with our results? Cast your vote on our blog homepage!

>Restaurants and the "R" word

>It isn’t a secret people are watching what they are spending. According to a Canton Repository article released this morning, servers are starting to feel the pinch of a slower economy.

Like many college students, I was a server at Outback Steakhouse for the greater portion of my college career. It was steady, fast money – perfect for a college student. Because of the menu selection on Outback, I waited on all walks of life and received just as many variations in tips. This article seems to reflect how almost all restaurants and seeing a slowdown in larger tips. In my opinion, the Repository’s article completely missed the point on WHY certain restaurants are feeling the decrease and others aren’t.

The people who are starting to tip less in restaurants are going to be middle class consumers and lower. They are the ones feeling the pinch in the economy, not the upper class.

The Canton Repository did a great job in interviewing servers from a variety of restaurants – Friday’s, Damon’s, Peter Shears, Bender’s and Esber’s. It was no surprise all restaurants except for one reported a recognition in decreased tips, all restaurants but Peter Shears – Canton’s only 5 star restaurant.

I’ve had the honor of eating at this restaurant and from those experiences, I assure you this is not a restaurant aimed at the middle class. Their outstanding menu and phenomenal wine selection is targeting the upper class. These people have more than enough money to not flinch when filling up their cars at $3.99 or even consider ordering a cheaper bottle of wine to save a few dollars. Therefore, yes, there are some servers receiving lower tips because of the economy. But some servers, like Carrie Berger of Peter Shears, won’t notice a decrease because of the restaurant’s clientele.

As a witness of the restaurant slowdown after the 9/11 attacks I am telling you from experience. I am sure there are upper class citizens out there feeling the crunch as we all are, I am merely saying this is hurting the middle class and below much more.

-Katy