Restaurant companies with broad networks and plans for international expansion face a unique challenge: how do you stay true to your roots while catering to local tastes? McDonald’s well-publicized strategy of offering both core and localized items appears to be hitting all the right notes, and demonstrates how the challenge of striking this balance also serves as a unique opportunity. In the U.S. market, where major players work furiously to differentiate themselves, these far-flung outposts can serve as seeds for innovation. Could internationally-inspired products such as Jack in the Box’s Teriyaki Bowl or Wendy’s Asian Sweet & Spicy Chicken be even more successful than traditional “American” fare? There is no a priori way to tell. The winning strategy is to keep your eyes open to innovative ideas, execute well-designed tests, and aggressively roll-out the ones that work.