- Denny’s has begun marketing to the gamer audience by using in-game advertising and providing promo codes to people their marketing team come across in-game.
- Due to the pandemic, Denny’s has shifted much of its marketing content to include messages of “unity and hope“, as well as showing the community what the company is doing to help during the pandemic.
- Denny’s started the #OneTableChallenge on social media which aimed to encourage restaurants to support their competitors during these tough times by ordering food from them.
- The company continues to use its marketing to appeal to a wide demographic base by employing a “come as you are” attitude in its messaging.
- Denny’s targets college students with their 24/7 restaurants located on-campus of some colleges. They can see upwards of 100 customers per hour in these locations.
- Denny’s has put out marketing campaigns featuring young, culturally-diverse actors in hopes of bringing in a more diverse customer base.
2. Cracker Barrel
- Cracker Barrel has begun marketing a new beer and wine menu in hopes of bringing in more people during the pandemic.
- The company has tried to immerse itself in current social media culture with things like making brand-themed GIFs on the popular platform, GIPHY.
- They are also marketing their to-go options on social media, such as family meal baskets.
- Another pandemic-related strategy the company has is featuring photos of its diners wearing masks at their restaurants.
- In 2018, 17.05% of Cracker Barrel visitors were 18-29 years old, 16.08% were 30-49 years old, and 16.78% were 50-64 years old.
- Millennial families are a large part of the company’s customers, with 68.2% rating Cracker Barrel as their top family restaurant to visit.
- A recent marketing campaign from Cracker Barrel targeted white consumers, over the age of 35, with incomes ranging from $60,000 to $149,000 per year.
3. Huddle House
- Huddle House used their own supply chain to offer household staples alongside their new to-go delivery program, marketing these by emphasizing their desire to help the community during the pandemic.
- On Facebook, the company posts about various food-related holidays, such as National Breakfast Month and National Coffee Day, advertising their offerings that go along with the holiday.
- The company partnered with Uber Eats to offer delivery and markets about the partnership on their Facebook page.
- Because their restaurants are open 24/7, they serve a lot of people that work nights such as truck drivers, medical staff, and construction workers.
- Families are a large part of Huddle House’s demographics because of their family-friendly menu and affordable pricing.
- The chain also sees a lot of senior citizens that eat at their restaurant regularly.
4. Marie Callender’s
- Marie Callender’s celebrated leap year by offering discounts on February 29th.
- Their Facebook page has been empty since March of this year, possibly due to the fact that they closed 19 stores due to bankruptcy filings.
- Marie Callender’s main customer base is people over the age of 50.
- Their second largest group of customers is young families.
- Biscuitville is currently marketing themselves through their efforts during the pandemic by doing things such as donating laptops and food to schools.
- On social media, Biscuitville posts about various employees and their excellent service and friendly demeanor. They couple this with the location the employee works at, inviting customers to come meet them.
- On Facebook, they keep their marketing simple with feature photos of various restaurant offerings, often tying them into current themes such as summer and fall.
- Because of its locations, especially in the Fayetteville area, much of Biscuitville’s customer base are young people under the age of 30.
- Biscuitville has locations in North Carolina and Virginia. In Virginia, 69.4% of people are white, as are 6.51 million people in North Carolina.
- In North Carolina, the median age is 38.9 and the average household income is $53,855 per year.
- In Virginia, the median household income is $71,564.
6. First Watch
- First Watch coined the phrase “daytime cafe” to market themselves and set themselves apart from their competitors.
- First Watch has been posting information about voting and how to register on their company Facebook page, keeping up with the current social trends.
- The company has added videos of their food being made to their social media pages, encouraging viewers to follow along at home.
- Their Facebook page has many posts that talk about trending holidays, like National Pancake Day, and that mention take-out and eating at home.
- Of First Watch’s Instagram followers, 66.3% are female and 33.7% are male.
- 49.78% of their followers are interested in “children and family”, which leads to the assumption that many of their customers are families.
- In a 2017 demographics survey for a potential First Watch franchise location the company found that 89% of participants were between the ages of 18 and 24.
- They also discovered that 89.8% of their potential customer base was single, and 84.7% were full-time students.
7. Hash House a Go Go
- One of the main marketing strategies of Hash House a Go Go is talking about their exceptionally large portion sizes, which they often do on social media.
- They also frequently mention awards they have won, such as the All Time Best 2020 award, and encourage customers to vote for future awards on social media.
- Most of their recent marketing features simple photos of their food, along with listing restaurant hours or restaurants that are now re-opened for dine-in.
- Most of Hash House a Go Go’s few locations are in Nevada.
- In Nevada, 66.1% of people are white, 8.93% are African American, and 8.03% are Asian.
- 49.8% of people in Nevada are female and 50.2% are male.
- The average median household income in Nevada is $57,598 per year.
8. The Original Pancake House
- The Original Pancake House keeps its social media presence scarce and simple, only posting infrequent updates about which restaurants are open and what new policies are implemented.
- Their website also features little-to-no advertising of specials or any other marketing, just a list of menu items and locations.
- One SWOT analysis showed that the company has very little brand presence in comparison to similar chains.
- Their target market includes upper to middle-class people.
- IHOP focuses heavily on seasonal trends by marketing seasonal offerings such as Elf on the Shelf pancakes and pumpkin spice-inspired dishes.
- They also align their marketing with new film releases by offering film-inspired dishes such as Grinch and Addams Family pancakes.
- IHOP has started marketing their to-go services more frequently on their Facebook page.
- Much of their social media marketing includes things like fun facts, simple photos, and meme-like posts that engage customers.
- IHOP caters mostly to suburban populations, having very few locations in large urban cities.
- More than 50% of IHOP’s customers are under the age of 35.
- The chain also serves a lot of families.
10. Waffle House
- In attempt to recoup some losses during the pandemic, the company advertised the sale of their famous waffle mix online. The product sold out within three hours.
- Waffle House caters to seasonal trends, such as their Valentine’s “bucket list experience“, transforming their restaurant into a fancy date night spot for the day.
- They are currently partnering with TouchTunes to host the online Tunies awards, tying in marketing by asking customers to come to the restaurant to vote and enter to win an award.
- They also tend to offer a lot of giveaways and contests, such as this one for Waffle Week.
- Many of their social media posts invite customers to interact with them, creating more of an interactive marketing strategy.
- The chain has a reputation for serving a lot of “tipsy” people who come for the greasy food to aid their hangovers at any hour of the night, creating the assumption that part of their customer base comes from nightlife.
- The chain targets all income levels, including the lower class population, with its affordable prices.
- In many southern areas the restaurant serves more African American customers than Caucasians.