Buffalo Wild Wings is going back to its roots as a sports bar, by using March Madness as a vehicle to roll out a flurry of activations in a bid to reinvigorate itself as a hub to meet friends for big sporting events.
Following its acquisition by Inspire Brands back in February 2018, the chain has continued to partner with the NCAA as the “Official Hangout for NCAA March Madness”, which has proved to be a successful and integral partnership.
Chief Marketing Officer Seth Freeman commented: “March is the first step on a journey toward reclaiming our heritage as a great sports bar.
“The number one thing we are addressing is that we’ve strayed from our essence as a sports bar and have gotten too close to being a fast-casual dining chain.
“That’s not who we are, and that’s not why our guests love coming to our restaurants. We are making strategic decisions to return to our essence.
“Our partnership with the NCAA allows us to tap into the cultural relevance of March Madness in so many ways, whether it’s in-restaurant, in our TV ads, or on social media – the opportunities are endless.”
The last seven years have meant that Buffalo Wild Wings has had to significantly adjust its marketing campaign, as fans shift towards using mobile phones to watch sporting events as opposed to the traditional communal setting such as a sports bar.
Alongside rolling out a new menu, the chain has rolled out a new aggressive ad campaign with three spots taking a “stand against fans watching games under sub-par conditions, like on their phone or in their cubicle or basement,” in a bid to encourage fans to make a pitstop at Buffalo Wild Wings.
Freeman concluded: ““We want to be the place to be so you don’t miss a second of the action.”