How Do You Measure Your Consumer Marketing Spend?

Bojangles' has one of the highest average unit sales volumes in the QSR industry, driven by strength across all three primary day parts. We have a large number of very loyal customers, but the customer on Monday can be very different than the lunch customer on Sunday. So we've profiled each of our customer "segments" to understand how and why they behave, and we are working to incorporate these segment views into all our measurement efforts.

In terms of what we measure, we try to understand within a given geographic area the degree to which consumers are aware of Bojangles', have tried Bojangles' (ever or recently), and their frequency of recent visits. We also measure how all our paid, earned, and owned media are affecting these trial and frequency rates. To that end, we evaluate the effectiveness of our broadcast media investments and allocations; the engagement rates and direct and indirect sales impacts of digital and social media; and the impressions and media value generated by various partnership marketing and PR efforts, including the annual Bojangles' Southern 500, a NASCAR Sprint Cup race we began sponsoring in 2012.

We measure these things in a variety of ways using a combination of proven methods and emerging Syndicated research sources help us understand our share of units and spending in each metro area where we operate, as well as the media consumption habits and social interests of our target customers in these areas.

We also have relationships with a small number of marketing services firms that assist us with monitoring and optimizing new product development opportunities, existing product pricing, local rating and review sites, and our customer care channels. Additionally, we are testing several new methods for monitoring and engaging in the increasing number of outlets consumers have to express themselves through social media. And we use internal or proprietary systems to evaluate the results of promotional events, limited time offers, and product or pricing tests.

In 2013, Bojangles' began to implement a new point-of-sale system that will make our direct and loyalty marketing efforts more effective and, more important, more customer-friendly. Coinciding with that deployment is the launch of our first-ever guest satisfaction survey program, where we will allow customers to tell us about their most recent visit in exchange for a compelling incentive to return.

Bojangles' is far from conquering the "big data" challenge, but our ability to generate unique insights and use data and knowledge to make decisions has never been greater.

Douglas J. Poppen is Director of Marketing at Bojangles' Restaurants.

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