It’s been just a few short months, but new Bar Louie CMO Stephanie Hoppe has already spiked the sales—and the burgers —at the growing neighborhood bar & eatery.
Along with her expertise in driving customer engagement with strategic approaches to social, mobile and traditional marketing, Hoppe applied her passion and experience in menu innovation to develop a new Spiked Bulleit Bourbon Burger served with a shot-glass of spiked house-made BBQ sauce. Available only to those 21 and over through the end of August, the burger has already been a huge hit at each of the 114 locations around the country.
Before joining Bar Louie, Hoppe most recently served as chief marketing officer for LYFE Kitchen, where she was charged with leading all branding, marketing, public relations, supply chain and food and beverage innovation efforts. She also served as vice president of menu innovation and implementation at Red Robin, vice president of marketing and Culinary at Lone Star Texas Land and Cattle Steakhouse and senior director of marketing at 7-Eleven, where she helped launch the popular Slurpee Facebook page that garnered more than 2 million followers.
“When I lived in Chicago, I was a regular at my neighborhood Bar Louie. I went there at least once a week,” Hoppe says. “Throughout my career, I’ve always loved the bar segment and the innovation side of the hospitality industry, so the opportunity to join Bar Louie played into everything I’m passionate about.”
As Bar Louie recently geared up growth through both franchising and corporate locations, Hoppe’s main objective is to bolster overall brand awareness and engagement both nationally and at the hyper-local level. With formal awareness studies and focus groups in process, Hoppe is travelling around the country to various Bar Louie locations, having open conversations with guests in an effort to create programs that will resonate long-term.
Bar Louie CEO John Neitzel said recruiting Hoppe was a big win for the brand. “Stephanie has a proven track record of success with each of the brands she has worked with,” Neitzel adds. “As we open new franchise and corporate locations, Stephanie will be growing our awareness not only through relevant marketing strategies, but also developing food and beverage innovations that are on trend and spot-on with our customer base.”
Founded in Chicago’s River North neighborhood in 1991, Bar Louie emerged from local restaurants and sandwich shops opened by its founders, Ted Kasmir and Roger Greenfield. When Bar Louie was first established, its two founders set out with a goal to continue the tradition of these shops while also giving local residents dining and beverage options for each part of the day. The “Louie” sandwich was a staple of the early restaurants and is still served at Bar Louie establishments across the country. In 2010 Bar Louie was purchased by Sun Capital, helping the brand to build infrastructure to grow in new neighborhoods.