Over the years I have witnessed several culinary concepts cater to almost every single market segment except for families. I have always found this very surprising. I felt that this needed to be addressed so last year I began emphasise the need for this demographic to be recognised and the results have been clear and positive.

From cafés to licensed restaurants, concepts should explore how they can expand and accommodate their offerings to an entire segment that are big spenders, loyal, and spread the word more than any other group of people.

Soul Communications conducted studies where they asked men and women with children what they desire when it comes to dining with their children. These people are constantly dining out and appreciate every ingredient that goes into the food that both they and their offspring eat. The study encompassed professionals and foodies (believe it or not, they too can have children). It turns out that children will be the driving force for selecting somewhere to eat when dining as a family. If the children are satisfied and entertained, the parents will be happy and they will be back.

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All parents yearn for a fuss-free dining experience and as a mother of three boys all under seven-years-old, I can honestly say that very seldom does a restaurant provide a solution or even an empathetic gesture to allow my husband and I to have a more pleasurable time. Parents tend to revolve their decisions around what is good for their children so an excellent restaurant could be waived because it doesn’t cater to kids.

A large percentage of the people polled do not want to compromise quality, taste, or experience just because their kids are with them but are often forced to dine at the certain places just because they cater to children. Often we witness a more “to the masses” restaurants ticking the boxes for all members in the family except for the parents.

But what if favourite venues that speak to parents also open a slot of care to children during weekends, in the mornings, or at lunchtime?

Witnessing first-hand and consulting on menus personally — with almost ten partners jumping onto this mind-set, we have seen numbers ranging from a 30 to 50% influx of guests entering their concepts on what would have been considered dead time or quiet periods.

When it comes to a children’s menu, a restaurant needs to incorporate the ethos and DNA of their brand, not steering away from their beliefs. Operationally, this menu should derive from the current ingredients found within the kitchen so nothing additional is purchased.  Although it is easier to eat, smaller portions, and hyping good-for-you elements, it is still the same brand.

Media are also huge fans of this and brands will start to notice that their children’s menus are announced not only in parent-focused publications but in titles that both men and women read every day online and in print. Parents are everywhere. Don’t ignore them!

Farah Sawaf is the managing partner at Soul Communications and founder of the culinary website cookingwithamanicure.com