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2010 Multi-Unit Restaurant Technology Conference
Michael J. Friedman
Director Interactive Marketing
DARDEN RESTAURANTS

Michael Friedman is Director of Interactive Marketing Services for Darden Restaurants, parent company of Olive Garden, Red Lobster, LongHorn Steakhouse, The Capital Grille, Bahama Breeze and Seasons 52 restaurants. Friedman joined Darden Restaurants in 2001 as Internet Strategy Developer and Brand Marketing Manager for Red Lobster, and has experience driving online initiatives and customer relationship initiatives since 1996. Friedman leads Darden's strategic development and deployment of digital and customer relationship programs, which serve to engage guests and enhance the quality of the guest experience online and in the restaurant. Further, Friedman is responsible for online brand growth through social and emerging media, digital advertising and online experience design, including the category-leading Fresh Catch Club and award-winning Red Lobster, Bahama Breeze and Olive Garden websites.

At Darden, Friedman champions cross-concept efforts to drive consumer engagement, increase customer loyalty and grow online sales channels, including the launch of Red Lobster's "Fresh Seafood at Home" program, where consumers can order Live Maine Lobster, Fresh Seafood and Lobster Bakes for overnight delivery.

Previously, Friedman was Director of Interactive Strategy for Trumpet, a New Orleans and New York based full-service advertising agency. Before his post at Trumpet, Friedman founded Pathmark Internet Advertising in 1996. Friedman received a Juris Doctor from Tulane University School of Law, a Master of Business Administration from The A.B. Freeman School of Business at Tulane University and a Bachelor of Arts in Government and Politics from The University of Maryland. He has also served as an adjunct professor of e-commerce and interactive marketing. Friedman is married to Christine, formerly Laliberte, and the father of two sons, Caleb and Owen.
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