In a fast-paced industry, staying relevant is no simple feat. 1851 Franchise connected with MOOYAH Burger, Fries and Shakes Director of Marketing Natalie Anderson Liu to learn how the brand thrives in its segment and to hear what she finds most exciting and challenging about her role.
In the ever-changing franchise landscape, how do you adjust your marketing perspective?
At MOOYAH, we don’t adjust our marketing perspective too often. We focus on telling a consistent brand story in a way that represents who we are and doesn’t falter when the tides change. We’re lucky that we offer delicious, high-quality food in a fun environment, so it’s not a hard sell to potential guests or for potential franchise partners to want to be involved. We’re very honest about what the brand stands for and who represents it, which takes a lot of the pressure off us. When we’re confident and genuinely have a good time in our restaurants, in our corporate office and in our marketing strategy, we find that like-minded people naturally find us.
How have you restructured marketing efforts to be increasingly holistic in terms of brand outlook and strategy?
We have a very well-defined brand and a focused strategy, so we haven’t really seen a need to restructure marketing efforts. We understand that with 73 restaurants in 30+ media markets, we can’t afford to be scattered with our message or plan media tactics that don’t reach our target.
What do you do to stay relevant to a variety of audiences?
As you might imagine, we look and sound slightly different on Instagram, Facebook, business-to-business messaging, etc., but that isn’t by accident. Our team spends time creating briefs about brand strategy, messaging and target audience and then we’re able to let the media tactic drive how the message comes to life. Most importantly, we’re always reinforcing the same brand promise and reasons to believe in what MOOYAH has to offer. Everything builds up to a holistic brand message, but due to the placement and nuances of the various audience demands, we make subtle shifts to remain relevant.
What is the biggest challenge you’ve had as a Director of Marketing?
The brand has so many opportunity areas to grow and our team gets excited about all of them, so one of the biggest challenges is staying focused on key initiatives and seeing them through successful completion. We have to train ourselves to stay focused and complete the task at hand with excellence before jumping to the next idea. Of course, there are exceptions and our industry moves exceedingly fast, but overall, staying focused has served us well.
How do you measure success of marketing initiatives for the brand as a whole?
We’re always looking for positive change and growth of the brand in all of our markets in categories like awareness, sales, guest check, guest satisfaction, social media engagement and more. We have great internal analytics that allow us to measure and track those metrics. Additionally, satisfaction from our franchise partners is also a metric that figures largely into whether a program was successful for us and if it will be repeated.