February 01, 2012 // Franchising.com // Sharon, PA – Quaker Steak & Lube®, known for its Best Wings USA and over 20 sauce varieties, has been focused on local store marketing since day one. With its tagline, “There’s Always Something Happening At The Lube®,” events and promotions are the brand driver behind the fun atmosphere and increased traffic throughout the chain’s 48 locations. There are many things that the motor-sports themed restaurants do right – and based on 2011 same store sales you can clearly count marketing as one of them.
The field marketing support, restructured in 2011, is based on the success of company restaurants that began employing MACs (Marketing Activities Coordinators) prior to 2011. Daily events are a key component of the marketing strategy. MACs are focused on driving traffic into their restaurants, giving diners exciting events to attend, participate actively in their communities, and promote-promote-promote using any vehicle at their disposal. Armed with toolboxes, and other guerilla marketing tactics, these MACs take to the surrounding area of their restaurants with the goal of turning everyday guests into die hard Lubies.
“Some restaurants that have seen a lift in same store sales credit the MAC program for this increase in traffic. In 2011, the Lubes that embraced the MAC program saw a same store sale increase of 2%. A strong local store marketing program can keep you on the minds of your guests far beyond their time spent within your four walls,” says Megan Duniec, Director of Field Marketing for Quaker Steak & Lube®.
In July of 2011, Quaker Steak & Lube® rolled out regional marketing positions. These positions, known as MACROs (Marketing Area Catalyst of Revenue Optimization) devote their time to training and developing restaurant level MACs, implementing restaurant visits, helping create marketing and PR plans, as well as additional local support tailored to the market place. Immediately following the launch of the MACRO platform, the MAC program reached a 95% participation rate among Quaker Steak & Lube® restaurants.
With any other growing casual-dining brand, marketing is a priority. National campaigns are developed, printed materials deployed, email blasts sent, Facebook updates posted, but for a casual-dining brand such as Quaker Steak & Lube®, it is nearly as much about events, promotions and building relationships as it is food and beverage.
“As a company, we have built a culture of being the place for fun and great food. Every employee is trained to understand the uniqueness of our brand. Our guests don’t fit into one particular mold, and we love that about them! With a demographic of 2 to 82, our loyal Lubies have a variety of interests from sports to kids programs, cars and bikes to charitable events and family programs. Lube Nation is growing and growing and we’re actively expanding to meet that need,” continued Duniec.
To demonstrate the brand’s growth and it’s correlation to the MAC/MACRO program, Duniec and Senior Director of Marketing for Quaker Steak & Lube®, Marla Pieton, presented at this year’s franchise conference the increased trend in Facebook Fans, Email Club Members and Text Message Recipients since the onset of the program. Growing these databases is a key MACRO focus with the social media phenomenon, and in the months since the program’s launch there has been steady growth, a decline in opt-outs, and a more consistent schedule of messaging.
Overall, Lube fans have continued to patronize The Lube®, and the launch of additional weekly events, holiday celebrations, and one-day happenings at all the restaurant locations throughout the system. Examples of Quaker Steak & Lube® restaurant promotions can be found on each location’s website and Facebook pages. System-wide promotions such as All-You-Can-Eat Wing Tuesdays and fair-weather’s Bike Nites have been long standing record-breaking sales events.
For more information about Quaker Steak & Lube®, please visit quakersteakandlube.com. Or the official Facebook page.
Founded in 1974 and built in an abandoned gas station in Sharon, Pa., the original Quaker Steak & Lube® began as a cook-your-own steak restaurant, before expanding to over 40 locations throughout the United States and Canada. The unique décor, including race cars suspended from the ceilings, motorcycles, Corvettes and gas station memorabilia, combined with the crave-able food and high-octane events, has afforded The Lube® a cult-like fan following. Today, Quaker Steak & Lube® has become one of the fastest-growing restaurant chains in the country and has won hundreds of national and international awards for its wings and over 20 different wing sauces. Most recently, it was named the 2010 Festival Favorite at the National Buffalo Wing Festival in Buffalo, New York. For more information, visit www.quakersteakandlube.com.