When we got the opportunity to pitch the Uncle Julio’s business, I could hardly contain myself. You see, my background is in restaurant marketing. First at Darden Restaurants working on the Red Lobster brand, then with Sandella’s a start-up (at the time) fast-casual concept. Spending the last 10-years or so away from the restaurant biz kinda left an empty, unfulfilled feeling in me.
Uncle Julio’s, to those of you who don’t know, is a “polished-casual” Mexican restaurant concept based out of Dallas, TX. They have over 20 locations, primarily in TX, VA, and IL. My great friend and previous mentor, Tom Vogel, is the CEO of the company. Hence our connection to the brand. Despite our knowing each other, Tom put us up against a handful of other agencies to compete for their business.
We poured over the research provided to us, we studied the Mexican restaurant industry, brainstormed, conceptualized, vetted, revised and ultimately gave them 6 killer campaign concepts for consideration. The concept we called “Experiences Made From Scratch” is what won them over and secured us as their creative agency.
So strategic thinking and pretty creative is one thing, but executing and driving results is what really determines our value– right? We took our master creative idea and applied it to the Dallas/Fort Worth market to help launch new menu items, specifically 7 new fajitas. (An aside: You have to trust me when I tell you that Uncle Julio’s fajitas are simply the best I’ve ever had. If you find yourself near an Uncle Julio’s you must stop in and try them for yourself). We developed an integrated campaign consisting of a landing page, email, SEM, retargeting, outdoor billboards, radio, social, video, and in-store. The results of the campaign drove social engagements through the roof, substantially increased e-club sign ups, fueled traffic to their website, and most importantly improved guest counts and sales in the market during the flight and after.
Since then, we’ve been working hand-in-hand with Uncle Julio’s on new ideas that support their brand, build their customer base, and reinforce “experiences made from scratch” messaging. Needless to say, we are delighted to have them as a client!