It all started for Jodi behind the wheel of the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile.
“It was an awesome job,” she says on this episode of Restaurants Reinvented. “It was all about marketing and generating PR + media impressions, so I learned a ton and that’s kind of what launched me into the food industry.”
After spending a year traveling the country in a hot dog-shaped vehicle, Jodi went on to marketing positions for brands such as Quiznos, Einstein Bros. Bagels and Smashburger before landing in her current role as Executive Vice President of Marketing at Teriyaki Madness. Now, she spends her days finding innovative ways to attract customers even in the midst of a pandemic.
In this episode, Jen Kern interviews Jodi about how to be a successful marketer with a limited budget and why your preexisting tools can be just as effective as fancy new ones. Jodi also discusses how giving back can help your brand, sharing how Teriyaki Madness’ “Pay it Forward” promotion fed more than 6,000 healthcare workers and first responders while also reviving business.
Name: Jodi Boyce
What she does: As the Executive Vice President of Marketing at Teriyaki Madness, an Asian-inspired restaurant chain, Jodi brainstorms and executes campaigns to get Teriyaki Madness’ bowls in as many people’s hands as possible.
Company: Teriyaki Madness
Key Quote: “My biggest lesson overall is to keep things simple. … It [marketing] is not brain surgery. It’s bringing to light what people want.”
Where to find Jodi: LinkedIn
🌶️ Convenience is always key — even more so during a crisis.
People are stressed enough as it is, so it’s up to marketers to find the quickest and simplest way to reach them — and entice them into becoming paying customers.
🌶️ You can adapt on a small budget; it just takes creativity.
Jodi’s employer has a small marketing budget, so she looks for innovative ways to use existing tools such as social media to reach a wider audience.
🌶️ “No, that’s not possible” should never be in your vocabulary.
No drive-through? No problem, you can make one. The sky’s the limit for good marketers and operators because they take the time to find every possible avenue for making the customer’s life easier.
When the going gets tough, help each other out
“People in our company, including our CEO who really led this — we were all feeling just kind of hopeless at home. Like ‘what can we do to help while all these doctors and nurses going out there?’ So we put together a ‘pay it forward’ promotion that was a meal for 10 people. Consumers, customers, businesses could order it for a hospital or first responder of their choice. They paid half, we covered the other half and we called every single customer individually and asked where they wanted it to go.”
Flexibility is the name of the game — especially during a pandemic
“We always had the ability to do curbside, but it just wasn’t part of our model. Prior to COVID, about 60-70% of our business was already to-go orders, and now it’s like 90-100%. So we added curbside for shops who didn’t have it, which was 90% of our locations, and then we even, in some locations, turned them into drive-throughs. There were a few where we did it in the parking lot. … And so everyone was just really flexible and we were doing whatever we could to get the food in people’s hands.”
Restaurants won’t survive unless they keep up with technology
“How do we stay ahead of the curve? Because this is not going away anytime soon. As far as people wanting convenience, there were so many people who were kind of forced to order online or through an app for the first time, and so a lot of people are introduced to it and love it. … Staying ahead of that by making everything seamless [is important]. How do we make it more convenient and just easy for consumers?”
Don’t ignore the resources right in front of you
“Our limited budgets kind of force us to prioritize. And we don’t even use a full-service agency, by any means. … We’ve had tremendous growth using social media and using the tools that we already have at our fingertips. Using our website, social media, our email club, texting — all those pieces that we’ve kind of already had going that are just growing.”
Good marketing doesn’t have to say something brand new every time
“It’s about not fragmenting the message. So just pick one or two things and stick to that message. There’s a lot of clutter out there and we need to break through. Be known for one or two things; don’t try to be something to everyone. It makes your marketing even easier, too, because you’re constantly repeating yourself in different ways, rather than trying to get 27 different messages out there.”