I had the pleasure of a behind-the-scenes look at Build-A-Bowl, Harvey’s new fast food concept, at the Cara Culinary Centre.
Now burger lovers can have it bunless. A choice of beef, chicken, veggie or fish on a generous helping of salad, rice or fries. Then it’s loaded with your choice of 30 toppings, customized to your taste. Build a salad, an entrée or put your own spin on poutine.
What can brand owners learn from the Build-A-Bowl launch?
#1. Know your target customer.
Harvey’s target is males and females aged 25 – 34 who gravitate to “new” and are flavour adventure seekers. The secondary target is 35 – 45 year old suburbanites with families. They want value and something for every family member.
Find out how much your customer is willing to pay (the price threshold). Harvey’s target price is under $8.
#2. Understand the trends.
What’s on-trend? One-bowl meals, healthier eating, carb avoidance, customization and ethnic flavours. Harvey’s hits them all. Know the evolving trends from food to lifestyles, and link them with your product.
#3. Have a relevant point of difference.
Instead of launching just another burger, Harvey’s took a unique approach, relevant to today’s consumers who want companies to cater to their needs. This hot personalization trend is not a new phenomenon. Harvey’s invented it. That is their point of difference.
#4. Do your research.
Build-A-Bowl was two years in the making, with extensive research and test marketing to gain valuable insights and validate assumptions. The key findings? Once people tried it, they loved it.
But how do you influence people to try something new? An integrated marketing campaign combines multiple tools to get the word out. Sampling, when done right, can drive trial. Layer on promotions, coupons, social media and traditional media to maximize visibility.
Harvey’s tactics include a 50% off introductory promo, TV ads, radio, mailer and digital Facebook and Google buys.
Harvey’s has no plans to redesign the burger logo. Burgers will continue to be the core of their business. But, Build-A-Bowl adds a fun flavour experience that gives Canadians something to talk about. If executed right, it will attract new customers and build loyalty.
#5. Deliver on the promise.
Harvey’s promises “Flame-grilled. Fresh toppings. Made the way you want it.” Execution is key to deliver a consistent experience and live up to the brand promise. Meeting your customers’ expectations will earn their trust and keep them coming back. And repeat business is what it’s all about.
Is Build-a-Bowl a success? Check out this update.
As a packaged foods consultant, Birgit Blain helps brands that struggle to maintain listings. Her experience includes 17 years with Loblaw and President’s Choice®. Contact her at Birgit@BBandAssoc.com or learn more at www.BBandAssoc.com
© Birgit Blain
This article was published in Food in Canada.