Finding A New Leading Man - How Romano's Macaroni Grill Developed A New Brand Ambassador That Audiences Love

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Recently, national restaurant chain Romano's Macaroni Grill found itself in a precarious business position. In an effort to keep up with the latest health trends, the previous management converted the menu to focus on a lighter, healthier Mediterranean style fare, reducing calories, portion sizes and ultimately flavors. The new menu hardly resembled the classic Italian cuisine the brand was famous for and as a result its core consumer left and sought newer, more enticing options. With the introduction of a new leadership team, Romano's Macaroni Grill rebuilt the menu, brought back many of the classic dishes, and went to VIA in search of a campaign that would reconnect the restaurant with its core guests. VIA was tasked with developing a campaign that reignited consumers' love affair with dining out and the "Italian dining experience." With a sharp wit and suit to match, they created The Connoisseur; the physical embodiment of Macaroni Grill's new brand platform. In this session, Brandon Coleman, Chief Marketing Officer of Romano's Macaroni Grill and Greg Smith, Chief Creative Officer of The VIA Agency, will provide insights on how the brand platform was built and how it informed the creation of The Connoisseur campaign. Brandon and Greg will also share best practices for getting to know your consumer, and creating a brand ambassador that your target market will embrace wholeheartedly. This presentation was originally shared at the ANA's Customer Insights Members Only Conference in Dallas and was one of the event's highest-rated sessions.

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Start: Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 1:00pm

End: Wednesday, August 1, 2012 at 2:00pm



Brandon Coleman
Chief Marketing Officer
Romano's Macaroni Grill

Greg Smith
Chief Creative Officer
The VIA Agency