“We’ve all been there—it’s game day and we’re stranded somewhere, instead of watching the game live. It’s a painful, almost helpless feeling for any true fan,” said Seth Freeman, who was announced as Buffalo Wild Wings’ new CMO on August 27. “The new creative celebrates the reality that a game should be enjoyed with friends, surrounded by TVs, great food, and cold beer.”
Check out the four ads below, which will start airing on TV August 30 and extend throughout the 2018 football seasons. Additional spots will be available for radio and the campaign features a refreshed logo, with a neutral brown and honey mustard color palette and an updated buffalo that is forward-leaning.
A football menu focuses on value
Beginning September 6, Buffalo Wild Wings is also leveraging a new football menu that features options starting at $5. There are two new items: Bratwurst & Fries, and a 38-ounce domestic pitcher of beer option. The menu will be available Monday through Friday at participating locations.
- Bratwurst & Fries
- 38-ounce Domestic Pitcher
- Cheeseburger & Fries
- Tall Craft or Import Beer
- Specialty Cocktails
These changes are perhaps the biggest since Buffalo Wild Wings came under new ownership in February. Arby’s Restaurant Group, backed by Roark Capital, purchased the chain for $2.9 billion and took it private as part of Inspire Brands. One franchisee, Diversified Restaurant Holdings, reported a 10.9 percent decrease in traffic at its 65 units last quarter.
This football-focused campaign, along with the possibility of sports gambling, are among Buffalo Wild Wings early efforts to reignite in-store business and drive comp sales back into positive territory. Before going private, the company estimated its financial performance for fiscal 2017 with same-store sales ranging from negative 1.6–1.7 percent, with total revenues for the year between $2.067–$2.069 million compared to $2.026 million in the prior-year period. In the third quarter of fiscal 2017, the company reported a net earnings decrease of nearly 20 percent as its cost of sales rose to 30.8 percent of restaurant sales from 28.9 percent during the same quarter last year. Buffalo Wild Wings posted adjusted earnings per share of $1.36. Same-store sales decreased 2.3 percent at company-owned restaurants and fell by 3.2 percent at franchise locations. Overall sales rose by 0.5 percent to $473 million while revenue also increased 0.5 percent to $496.7 million.