Buffalo Wild Wings has not been as successful over the past a couple of years with slumping sales along with a monthslong battle between executives and an activist investor. On February 5, the parent company of Arby’s, Roark Capital Group, closed a $2.9 billion deal to obtain Buffalo Wild Wings. Paul Brown will function as the Chief executive officer of the newly formed holding company Inspire Brands, which encompasses Arby’s, Buffalo Wild Wings, and R Taco.
The following day, Brown sat down with Business Insider to discuss Inspire Brands and his awesome prepare for Buffalo Wild Wings. “There may obviously be some changes towards the menu, changes for the experience, and changes for the marketing,” Brown said. Even though Buffalo Wild Wings isn’t going to transform into Arby’s 2., the sandwich chain’s turnaround over the past five years – which primarily involved shifts in their menu and marketing – has become a blueprint for future years from the chicken-wings chain.
Brown says Buffalo Wild Wings’ biggest problem is it lost what set it aside from the competition. “I do believe that if you look back when Buffalo Wild Wings was really, really, really successful, it absolutely was really the only one out there doing what it was doing,” Brown said. “We experienced a nationalized local sports bar, and then more competition comes in, and I think that a number of that competition has been a little more innovative.”
Brown continued: “I do believe there’s the opportunity to figure out the 21st-century incarnation of the items managed to make it so successful during particularly the early 2000s.” A “sea of sameness” has emerged as being a very common problem within the sit-down casual-dining industry recently. Buffalo Wild Wings, which includes sought to market itself less as being a sports bar and a lot more as a general casual-dining chain, was distracted by the business sales slump as more millennial diners ditched the sector.
In May, Buffalo Wild Wings’ CEO at that time, Sally Smith, wrote in a letter to shareholders explaining its slumping sales that “millennial people are more attracted than their elders to cooking at home, ordering delivery from restaurants, and eating quickly, in fast-casual or quick-serve restaurants.” Brown wants to emphasize what makes www.allfoodmenuprices.org/bww-buffalo-wild-wings-menu-prices distinctive from other sit-down chains. “In the event it was growing gangbusters, it didn’t position itself against its traditional cast of casual-dining players,” Brown said.
Brown has signaled that Buffalo Wild Wings needs a new menu strategy. Currently, much of the chain’s success is dependent upon chicken prices, which can be extremely volatile. “Ultimately, if you’re in the restaurant business, it boils down to food and innovation,” Brown said. To update Buffalo Wild Wings’ menu, Inspire Brands is embracing Arby’s for inspiration.
When Arby’s spun off from Wendy’s in 2011, it absolutely was losing huge amounts of money per year. Brown took over as CEO in 2013 and drastically revamped the chain’s menu and online marketing strategy. In 2016, Arby’s reached $3.7 billion in sales, making an average of $1.1 million in sales per US store, up 20% from the time Brown joined the chain. Arby’s had discovered that it required to serve menu things that customers couldn’t buy elsewhere, Brown said. And when the product was sold elsewhere, Arby’s needed to get the lowest price.
The chain kept its iconic roast-beef sandwich and Jamocha shake but began rolling out limited-time offerings like the Meat Mountain, which contains every meat on Arby’s menu between two buns. At Buffalo Wild Wings, whose menu has become little changed over time, Brown plans to roll out a similar strategy: trying to find things that other chains aren’t serving but that Buffalo Wild Wings can offer.
“There’s been a loss of product development at Buffalo Wild Wings with time, partially because casual dining up to now has not done just as much of this,” Brown said. Inspire Brands desires to fix by using a “systematic approach” that Brown says allowed Arby’s to rapidly churn out creative new menu items.
Arby’s success has been linked with its creative and quite often borderline bizarre online marketing strategy. The chain debuted the bold “We Have Now the Meats” campaign in 2014. Its social-media manager was given more freedom that year after having a tweet comparing Pharrell Williams’ hat in the Grammys to Arby’s logo went viral. Brown described the approach as “create the personality, the company, use earned media and all types of earned media to create a persona around it along with an awareness around it.”
“If you think about it, the Buffalo Wild Wings brand is made for that,” he said. He suggested Buffalo Wild Wings’ “persona” wouldn’t be a rip-off of Arby’s but would involve taking similar risks. “If we sit here per year from now avnnkf that Buffalo Wild Wings is sounding similar to Arby’s, we failed,” Brown said. Brown continued: “I think that is going to become the key – the way we actually go ahead and take learnings and the capabilities from what we’ve done and leverage those learnings, leverage the infrastructure, and do it in a way that the brands look completely different from each other.”
When asked what customers can get to change at Buffalo Wild Wings, Brown said, “Nothing.” Most of the task to change the chain around will likely be occurring behind the scenes, at least for the following couple of months, he stated. Brown says he’s already met with many Buffalo Wild Wings franchisees. As well as in January, ahead of the deal officially closed, Inspire Brands started consumer research to find out precisely what is going wrong at the chain and discover what Buffalo Wild Wings’ new era should consider looking like.