Chick-fil-A offers a variety of catering menu items, sizes and pick-up options, making cooking and shopping for any event much simpler. While this is a great offering from Chick-fil-A, the popular QSR restaurant has faced two specific challenges when it comes to its catering service. First, four out of five people do not know that Chick-fil-A offers catering. Second, even if they do know, most people associate "catering" with food delivery for big groups and/or large-scale events. In reality, 64% of events are hosted in people's homes, with an average order of food for 15 people or less.
To break the formal connotation associated with the term "catering," we had to reset customers' understanding of what catering means at Chick-fil-A. We needed to create an engaging, non-promotional content series to educate guests, both new and existing, about the limitless range of Chick-fil-A Catering options and compatible occasions. Ultimately, we wanted our fans to consider Chick-fil-A Catering for their next occasion and keep it top of mind when planning their next get-together. This led us to the idea of creating a "Hosting Handbook" that would provide customers with hosting tips, food hacks using Chick-fil-A Catering menu items, and fun ways to ensure their guests would have a great time, every time. The entire social campaign was centered on this digital handbook, where fans immersed in its content could move from page to page to see the next tip, menu hack or party idea provided by Chick-fil-A.
Our target works full time and is on the go, but also enjoys hosting gatherings. While we know our guests love to host, we also know they're often stressed trying to find the time to get it all done, especially when it comes to food.
We found that one way to relieve stress is to help our fans become more knowledgeable about options that can make hosting more hassle-free — even fun. Being in the know makes one seem like an "expert" host, without generating any guilt from taking shortcuts on food.
The tone of the Hosting Handbook was intentionally down-to-earth — just like the brand. Known as "An unofficial guide to gatherings, get-togethers and shindigs," the title made guests feel at ease and ready to conquer their next gathering.
On Facebook, "Catering 101" videos brought to life small stories about everything from Tray & Menu Variety to Delivery Options, showing guests how easy it is to place an order, have the food picked up or delivered, and served instantly to guests.
On Twitter, fans were given Hosting Basics, Chick-fil-A style: Tips like how to make a guest list, how to put together a playlist and even how to use Chick-fil-A Nuggets as a decoration. Chick-fil-A followers are vocal on Twitter and we wanted them to decide which tips and hacks they would receive. Throughout December, we offered weekly "Tip Tuesday" polls where fans could vote for which menu items they wanted to see "hacked" into a recipe. One of our fan favorites was seeing Chick-fil-A Chocolate Cookies turned into ice cream sandwiches.
On Instagram, our fans look for more curated content, so we offered ways for them to "Get Fancy-ish" with our hacks. Via social listening, we identified the top occasions we know our fans like to celebrate. Kids' birthday parties, holiday cookie decorating parties, football tailgates and New Year's Eve celebrations rose to the top. We created full tablescapes designed to match each occasion's theme and made three-row image takeovers to showcase the full length of the table setup. If fans were interested in seeing how to make the tablescape themselves, they could hop over to our Instagram story for a behind-the-scenes look at how the crafts and recipes were made. Hacks included everything from DIY utensil holders and sauce containers to custom tablecloths and even cookies shaped like footballs and art palettes. In addition to being published organically, we also promoted three carousel tablescapes on Instagram. The best performing video incorporated the recipe into the tablescape, providing a unique way for fans to dive into the content.
We then housed all how-to video content within a singular Facebook Canvas Ad, where fans could navigate based on which recipe hack they liked best and dive in to learn how it was made. The immersive canvas format had an average view duration of 48 seconds — twice the length of other brands — and resulted in and an 18% higher Estimated Ad Recall Lift Rate compared to videos.
For this campaign, we sought to educate, entertain and inspire fans with engaging and immersive social content that showcased recipes and hosting basics while also highlighting Chick-fil-A's Catering options. In order to measure performance against our primary KPI of awareness, we used a Facebook brand study that focused on three key metrics: Ad Recall, Familiarity and Purchase Intent. Through this brand study, users age 18-34 saw the "Hosting Handbook" video content on either Facebook or Instagram and were surveyed on Facebook within 48 hours to measure the effectiveness of the campaign content and messaging.
The results were extremely strong. We saw a 20-point lift1 in Ad Recall, 8 points above the category norm. We also saw a 13-point lift1 in those who either know a lot or a fair amount about Chick-fil-A's catering options (Familiarity) as a result of the campaign. In addition to driving Ad Recall and Familiarity, the campaign also resulted in a 6-point lift1 in Purchase Intent, 3 points above the category norm. This means we were able to see a lift in those who said they would be "very likely" or "somewhat likely" to consider Chick-fil-A Catering for their next gathering as a result of the campaign content. The engaging videos and immersive formats drove lifts across all three key metrics, showcasing the success of the campaign at driving awareness of and intent to consider Chick-fil-A Catering.1Statistically significant at 90% level.
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