Market Your Company’s Restaurant
Because of your experience with Japan, you have been hired to do market research for a well-
known American chain restaurant. The company is seeking to expand its market to Japan and
is looking to you to help make their transition to Japan a successful one. The company wants
you to aid in the development of a menu for its restaurant chain that will appeal to a Japanese
customer. In this project you will research some American restaurant chains that have already
expanded into Japan. You will compare and contrast the American and Japanese web sites in
order to form the basis of your decision making on how to help your client.
During the next two weeks you will be allotted lab time and time after school to research and
complete a menu for your company. You will choose an American chain restaurant that is not
already in Japan and modify its menu so that it appeals to a Japanese customer. Your menu
will include a front page, and all menu items relevant to the restaurant. Your menu must, of
course, be written in Japanese. You must also complete a one page typed paper that explains,
based on your research, your choices of design for your menu. Include specific information that
you learned through the resources provided.
1. Read the article “Japanification of American Fast Food”.
2. View the American corporate web sites of American chain restaurants that have locations in
3. View the Japanese web sites of those same restaurants.
4. Make a list that compares and contrasts the web sites for these companies. The list should
include such things as how the graphics, font, and page set up on the American page are
similar or different to the Japanese page. You should also note what age range, according
to American standards, the company is trying to target and generally, what seems to be
appealing to each specific market. Include all similarities and differences that you find.
5. Then, choose an American chain restaurant that you are familiar with.
6. Get a paper menu from that restaurant.
7. Modify the menu from the restaurant to appeal to a Japanese audience.
8. Turn in the American menu along with your Japanese version.
9. Write a one-page description, in English, of what changes you made to the American
version of the menu in order to create your Japanese version of the menu and why you
made those decisions. Be sure to included changes other than simply making the English
words Japanese. Base your reasoning on the research that you did previous to completing
1. Get a paper menu from your local Subway, KFC, McDonald’s, or Pizza Hut restaurants.
2. An article on American fast food restaurants in Japan:
3. Visit the following chain restaurant web sites:
a) McDonald’s U.S. corporate web site: http://www.mcdonalds.com/
b) McDonald’s Japan web site: http://www.mcdonalds.co.jp/
c) Kentucky Fried Chicken’s U.S. corporate web site:
d) Kentucky Fried Chicken’s Japan web sites: http://www.kfc.co.jp/
e) Pizza Hut’s U.S. corporate web site: http://www.pizzahut.com/
f) Pizza Hut’s Japan web site: http://www.pizza-net.co.jp/pizza-hut/
g) Subway’s U.S. corporate web site: http://www.subway.com
h) Subway’s Japan web sites: http://www.subway.co.jp/
i) Starbuck’s U.S. corporate web site: http://www.starbucks.com/
j) Starbuck’s Japan web site: http://www.starbucks.co.jp/ (under construction - 7/8/01)
3. For help with spelling words in Japanese: http://www.japanesetutor.com/dictionary.htm
4. For more help with spelling words in katakana, check out the dictionaries available in your
5. Check out Stark sensei’s menus from Japanese restaurants available in the classroom.
Here is the rubric I will use to grade your project.
1. Overall Aesthetic of Menu 1 2 3 4
neat, met length requirement, organized
2. Spelling in Hiragana and Katakana 1 2 3 4
correct use of spelling in Japanese
3. Vocabulary 1 2 3 4
includes a wide variety of vocabulary; is used appropriately
4. Time Spent Wisely 1 2 3 4
off task time is minimal; web used maximally for project
5. Use of Resources 1 2 3 4
variety of information from variety of places
6. Originality of Final Product 1 2 3 4
reflects research of Japanese aesthetic
7. Written Rationale 1 2 3 4
describes in detail how you approached the topic
When you finish this assignment you should understand some important differences and
similarities in the way Japanese and Americans target an audience. Next time you see an
advertisement for any product, try to think of how that same product might be marketed to a
Japanese person. Who knows, this could be the beginning of your future in product marketing
and development for a major corporation!
Description of What the Learners Will See and Do
1. Purpose of the assignment
To have the students experience what companies are doing on the web and project
why they are doing it that way
To enable students to have access to authentic Japanese materials
To expand the students thinking about their approach to a project
To enable students to create a project using Japanese
2. Process they will use
3. Products they are to create
A model menu for a Japanese restaurant
A one-page paper
Rationale for the Assignment
1. What is the subject matter goal for your lesson and how does the proposed technology help
you meet that goal?
One part of the subject matter goal for this lesson is to align my curriculum with the
district and national standards for foreign language; specifically, National
Standards for Foreign Language, Standard 4.2: Students demonstrate
understanding of the concept of culture through comparisons of Japanese culture
and their own.
I teach a unit on food where students learn how to speak and write about both
American foods and Japanese foods. This lesson will expose my students to real
corporate web pages. Students will be able to compare the U.S. branch of the
company with the Japanese.
Using the Internet will enhance the activity by bringing authentic materials into the
hands of my students. They will be experiencing actual corporate materials from
companies that they are familiar with.
2. What do you expect to see on the computer screens while students are using the
technology and how can you interpret what you see?
I expect to see the students looking at the corporate web pages and taking notes on
what they see. I also expect them to be clicking through the web pages to see what
the company has on its site beyond the front page.
I will interpret that they are off task if they are not looking a chain store web sites,
unless they can describe to me how what they are doing fits with the activity.
I also expect students to do some research on their own about whether the company
they are interested in is already in Japan.
3. What do you expect students to make of what they see on the computer?
I expect the students to compare and contrast the web sites between the two
countries, which include, but are not limited to:
what graphics are used
which font is used
what the page set up is
I also expect the students to make ethnocentric assumptions on the target audience
for the web sites, which include, but are not limited to:
the target age
what seems to be appealing to each specific market
4. What questions can you anticipate?
Why do Japanese make their sites like that?
Why are American sites so boring?
Why are the Japanese sites so childish?
5. How can you respond to them?
I will respond to them by discussion cultural differences as a class and by
viewing other examples of the similarities and differences (i.e. looking at
6. How can you assess what students are doing and what they are learning from this activity?
I will assess what they are doing by:
Using the rubric above
I will assess what they learning by:
Asking them questions about what they see
5. How will you hold them accountable for the work they do on the computer?
I will hold them accountable for the work they do on the by:
Asking them to keep a journal of the sites they visit on the computer
Grading the final product using the rubric above