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The Client

In 1972, two Atlanta-based pizza bakers with psychedelic pie dreams opened a little shop called Mellow Mushroom. So when they decided to introduce two burger flavors to the menu 43 years and 150 franchise restaurants later, a question arose: how can we weave these new products into our familiar, pizza-focused narrative?

01
The Challenge

Mellow needed a digital partner to help them launch their freshly baked burger products into the conscious of their customers and bring Herb and Carnie—the two personas of their new burgers—to life. Using strong brand research, a fantastic sweepstakes prize, some crafty digital strategy, and owned creative assets as the main ingredients, we cooked up a campaign that ultimately became Mellow’s most successful new product launch in company history.

Research

Consumer insights showed that Mellow’s audience was all-in for their hyper-mellow branding. Our resident burgers Herb and Carnie were also primed for bud-friendly banter, setting the stage for playful humor and storytelling. Platform analytics showed that our audience was apt to share and engage with this kind of content on Facebook, so we determined that a social and interactive component was crucial.

02
The Solution

Leveraging vignette animations and videos from their in-house team and their plethora of digital platforms, the #BurgerBFF Campaign was built. This engaging sweepstakes campaign combined their paid, earned, and owned channels into one, fluid experience.

Our campaign was headquartered on a mobile-friendly microsite, where our audience could sign up to win a grand prize trip to Denver or Seattle or interact with our burger buds through humorous videos, “BFF” quizzes, and custom Herb or Carnie-branded Pandora playlists.

Extended Interactions

Using photos and comments from our audience on social, we also created real-time customer response videos, bringing more life to our favorite burger buddies across organic channels. Any users to the site and within our audience segments also received retargeted ads on Facebook and across Mellow’s digital platforms, spurring more organic interactions and awareness of the new burgers. Beyond social, we used Mellow’s email database to send targeted messages to audiences and encourage more submissions on our microsite sweepstakes page. As expected, these extensions gave our burger buddies some serious reach.

03
The Results

Our campaign hit just right. Users spent, on average, a minute and 25 seconds on the microsite engaging with Herb and Carnie, taking our on-site quizzes, and signing up for the sweeps. Over 48,000 emails were also acquired through the sweepstakes, enhancing the number of active and valuable users in Mellow’s CRM database. Final campaign analysis showed a total of over 34MM impressions with a minimum direct sales impact of nearly $170k. 

When the smoke cleared, one thing was obvious: our audiences, unquestionably, loved our two burger-based best friends and everyone was buzzing about the new menu items.

Awards

The #BurgerBFF campaign also drew the attention of The American Advertising Awards, landing us good vibes and a nice and shiny Bronze Addy Award.

  • m impressions
  • K emails acquired
  • $K direct sales impact

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