When Constellation Culinary Group, formerly Starr Catering Group, approached us to assist in promoting the key growth brands within their portfolio, we took on the strategy, design, and execution of a range of dynamic marketing initiatives to make an integrated impact.
We recognized that each of the various business lines represented large market share opportunities for this ever-evolving firm, which provides avant-garde dining experiences within iconic cultural institutions and urban centers, as well as signature special events across the East Coast.
We began with a comprehensive brand launch and promotion strategy for Parliament, CCG's new artisan coffee brand and espresso bar chain, complete with an energy-packed microsite and digital marketing plan. While Parliament coffee is currently served at ten restaurants and cafes along the East Coast corridor from Miami to Massachusetts, CCG opened its own flagship coffee shop in the New-York Historical Society on Manhattan's Upper West Side in December 2016, with short-range plans to add two more locations in Philadelphia and Charlotte, NC. The flexible strategy and plan we implemented to support the New York City store launch can be adapted and applied to each new location as it opens.
One of the highlights of the campaign was a very successful Every Door Direct Mail (EDDM) promotion, a micro-targeted advertising method based on creating a direct-mail target market that is customized by postal route, allowing us to cost-effectively deliver promotional mailers to area restaurants or businesses without the need for purchased lists. After designing a postcard that enticed recipients to make Parliament their “everyday coffee shop” with a coupon offering complimentary coffee for up to five visits, we utilized a mapping tool from USPS to select the local ZIP Codes and carrier routes that represented the best potential return from the targeted local prospects. The result? A healthy uptick in loyal and repeat customers in exchange for a very modest marketing investment.
Informed and inspired by the work we had done for Parliament, we created a microsite for CCG’s regional Italian restaurant Storico, which also resides in the New-York Historical Society. A contemporary design coupled with a fresh tone and voice allowed us to keep the focus on the fresh ingredients, seasonally inspired menus, and culinary expertise for which CCG is so well-known. We also leveraged the timing of the restaurant's "refresh" - the unveiling of an all-new menu and several significant renovation upgrades - to launch a complementary marketing plan that included an EDDM campaign, a rack card distribution to local business, and a robust digital marketing plan.
The addition of La Belle Helene, an authentic flagship French brasserie in Charlotte, NC, brought an opportunity to create another microsite using the customizable Wordpress design system we created for the other venues — this time with a light, airy, Parisian flair and reordered components to fit the unique content requirements. We placed the culinary offerings front and center and created compelling original messaging that is infused with French expressions. A press section was designed for future media links and testimonials and a manageable promotion allows users to be presented with timely information, encouraging them to sign up for the newsletter and make reservations online. The launch of the site was timed to coordinate with a press event announcing the opening date of the restaurant.
On an as-needed basis, we have also overseen a variety of fluid promotions for CCG’s exclusive culinary services at Grounds for Sculpture, a unique event venue near Trenton, NJ, that features both indoor and outdoor intimate and large-scale spaces infused with museum-quality artwork. Our work has included the design, copy, and distribution of a series of promotional outreach emails, business development direct mailers, and special event invitations all aimed at increasing visibility and revenue streams from private and corporate events.
Finally, an array of editing and design services for collateral materials and menu boards serves to carry through a common aesthetic bound by the overall Constellation Culinary Group brand strategy.