O'Charley's deploys Valentine's Day e-mail campaign with new AOR

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With a new e-mail agency of record at the helm, family restaurant chain O'Charley's is revamping its e-CLUB e-mail program with a Valentine's Day push.

Touting its Valentine's Day weekend three-course dinner menu and a special Saturday and Sunday brunch, the e-mails went out in three phases to O'Charley's' database on February 3 and 8. The third will go out on the 12th. Currently, the chain's e-mail database has more than 1 million consumers. Consumers can opt in for information from the company online or in-store.

Last month O'Charley's signed BrightWave Marketing as its e-mail AOR. Together the companies hope to drive guest acquisition and visit frequency, as well as push enrollment in the e-mail program, said Wade Breaux, director of creative services for O'Charley's.

“We have a lot of insight as to who these people are,” he said. “Each market is very different and we wanted to speak to each one differently as opposed to having cookie-cutter communication.”

The incumbent e-mail agency is Fishbowl.

Going forward, Breaux said, O'Charley's will have various creative messaging tailored to different markets based on geographies and other demographics like cuisine preferences.

Previously, the chain sent out one to two e-mails per month. Breaux said the channel was being underused.

“One of our new goals is to understand what's too much and what's not enough communication,” he said. “The last thing we want to do is send out a lot of irrelevant e-mails. We want to send the right messages with the right frequency.”

In terms of other marketing, Breaux said O'Charley's also uses radio, print and TV ads, but that this year, the company reallocated a significant piece of its marketing budget to digital channels.

“We have an amazing opportunity because people are out there talking about our brand and reviewing us,” he said. “We want to be there having an ongoing dialogue with them. That's not something we can accomplish with TV and print.”

O'Charley's Inc. has 244 restaurants in 20 states in the Southeast and Midwest.

BrightWave Marketing referred questions to the client. Fishbowl did not respond to a request for comment.

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