Three things on every restaurant chain's To-Do list: create big media buzz, build greater brand awareness and have increased customer engagement and sales. With 919 Marketing leading the way with the Create a New Kolache PR campaign, the Houston-based bakery chain The Kolache Factory was able to do all three.
The Create a New Kolache contest asked customers to submit ingredients for a new kolache flavor (A kolache is a Czech pastry filled with meats, cheeses and fruit). The winning flavor was dubbed “Yes, Please” Mac-and-Cheese, a combo of mac-and-cheese, brisket and jalapeño peppers (YUM).
Dawn Nielsen, Kolache Factory COO says, "We are thrilled with the results of this contest. This proves that [our] kolaches have a loyal following, which is great for any company." It was an affordable experiment for the company, and the winner got free kolaches and a drink every day for a year.
As the chain expands from coast to coast, this contest really catapulted the brand. This contest generated media coverage in nine out of ten of the targeted media markets, netting more than 14 MILLION media impressions and earning more than $1 million in total media value. Total sales increased 4.5 percent during the contest month of June. Brand awareness and customer engagement were also significantly affected by the success of the Create a New Kolache contest.
The most impressive part of this contest was that it wasn’t a budget buster. It was kept simple — social media posts, in-store flyers, and word of mouth advertising were used along with 919 Marketing’s strategic PR tactics to promote this brand-boosting campaign for the Kolache Factory.