A&W were confident that there was a big opportunity for a plant-based burger that tastes just like real beef. In a Canadian first, the Beyond Meat Burger was launched, appealing not only to millennial meat reducers, but also to Whole Foodies and Planeteers.
But there was a challenge: how do we get them to try the Beyond Meat Burger given the barriers that stood in our way?
1. Hardly anyone knew what Beyond Meat was - except A&W.
2. “Veggie burgers” have a universally negative perception due to their taste and quality.
3. New innovations in food are often met with resistance.
Careful consideration of these barriers and understanding of our audiences shaped the strategy: target and win over the endorsement of early adopters to accelerate mainstream adoption. The campaign started with a pre-launch event with a guest list including plant-based food bloggers and celebrity chefs. As soon as our influencers posted online, news spread through Canada’s plant-based communities and their content became key stories in online news media that reached our early adopters. Through media, we then amplified this content to build authenticity with broader audiences.
Results and impact of this campaign were unprecedented:
- 13% same store sales growth, 4x increase over the same period a year prior.
- 1% market share increase over launch period while all competitor shares declined.
- 4X the monthly restaurant visits in just 3 weeks
- 62% brand recall of the Beyond Meat Burger (from 1.3% pre-awareness)
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