Hardee's expanding dual-branded Red Burrito locations
The Hardee's is converting more than 20 Birmingham area locations to dual-branded Hardee's/Red Burrito locations.
According to a spokesperson, the conversions are taking place this August and September.
The Red Burrito chain, featuring Tex-Mex style food like burritos and tacos, is part of CKE Restaurants Inc., which also owns the Hardee's and Carl's Jr. brands.
Jenna Petroff, public relations and social media manager for Hardee’s Food Systems, stated that CKE Restaurants started this dual-branding program with sister chain Carl’s Jr. in 1994.
“It is Green Burrito on the West Coast and Carl’s Jr. now has more than 500 dual-branded units,” she stated. “After seeing the success of the program – there currently more than 500 dual-branded Carl’s Jr./Green Burrito restaurants – Hardee’s began its own co-branding initiative with Red Burrito in 2005.”
The first dual-branded restaurant with Red Burrito opened in Belleville, Ill., in the St. Louis designated market area (DMA) where Hardee’s headquarters is located.
“The goal is to provide consumers with more choice – great burgers, as well as tacos and burritos - in the convenience of a single location,” Petroff added. “This increases foot traffic, frequency and provides incremental sales for the company.”
Expansion nationwide will also help the Tex-Mex concept expand its brand recognition to an already active customer base.
“Red Burrito is growing its brand through new product innovation and regional specials/promotions,” our source said. “Additionally, the Red Burrito line offers catering for parties, tailgates, etc.”
There are currently almost 250 dual-branded Hardee’s/Red Burrito restaurants, and Petroff confirmed that there are no plans currently to create free-standing Red Burrito only locations.
“There is a strong presence in St. Louis, Charlotte, N.C., Indianapolis, Greensboro, N.C.; and Jacksonville, Fla. just to name a few,” she continued.
Since there are many factors that go into deciding when and where a restaurant will be built or remodeled, our source said it’s company policy to not comment on these plans.
Red Burrito features a variety of tacos and several different burritos, which also appeal to Hardee’s key young, hungry male demographic. Therefore, co-branded locations are designed to offer more choice, versus targeting new customer segments.
“However, any time you expand menu offerings, such as Tex-Mex in addition to burgers, you naturally expand your overall appeal and ability to please those indecisive about what they want for lunch or dinner,” Petroff expressed.
Weber Shandwick, with headquarters in New York, provides assistance in promoting Red Burrito’s specific events, but most agency support and resources are dedicated to the core Hardee’s brand.
“Much of the Red Burrito marketing is directed from corporate and conducted at the local level through local regional marketing programs, word of mouth, events, sampling and coupon drops,” Petroff added.
The eatery also works with Initiative
, out of Los Angeles, for media buying and planning.
Nielsen reported that Hardee’s allocated $27.6 million towards advertising in 2010, the majority of which – about $24.5 million – was spent on spot television ads. About $2.6 million also went towards outdoor ads and another $435,000 went towards spot radio ads.