Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Is Chipotle Gambling with Success


If your house is anything like our house, I’m sure you have heard the words, ‘turn off the computer and come to dinner’.  There is more than one family meal in America that has been eaten cold when a child or errant adult just could not get off the computer while playing games.

Gamification is not gambling; it is an excellent way to edify brand relevance with a growing base of consumers according to Steven Johnson, Grocerant Guru® at Tacoma, WA based Foodservice Solutions® who stated, “gamification empowers brand interaction and edifies participation.”

For those of you who don’t know, Gamification by a brand, is the strategic attempt to enhance systems, services, and branded activities in order to create similar experiences to those experienced when playing games in order to motivate and engage customers.

So, when Chipotle Mexican Grill and livestream gaming platform Twitch announced a partnership naming Chipotle the exclusive limited-service restaurant of /twitchgaming, a new channel on the platform, the team at Foodservice Solutions® knew it was a sound thoughtful strategic decision.

This is the first partnership of its kind for Twitch the successful social media platform.  Chipotle, will be the official marketing partner for the channel, which is being described as a place for gamers by gamers on the platform.

So, the channel will have sessions about the future of gaming, news related to gaming, celebrity participants and more. Throughout the summer, Twitch will host multiple events to boost the channel’s reach, and some of those will be in partnership with Chipotle.

Grocerant niche interactive participatory marketing will play a big role as part of the sponsorship, Chipotle will host a new game. “Chipotle Build Your Own PC,” inspired by Chipotle’s burrito bar format, will have players will build their own PCs with streaming “extras” (e.g. lighting panels and soundproofing equipment), and donate the PCs to a non-profit organization.

Chipotle is also launching a branded feature where hosts and guests provide their unfiltered opinions on the gaming topic at hand adding incremental authenticity to the game.

Regular readers of this blog know that Chipotle is no stranger to Twitch. In April 2020, the Newport Beach, Calif.-based brand began its Chipotle Challenger series, which allows amateur gamers to compete against gaming stars and celebrities.

They also remember that, last August, in anticipation of the launch of the chain’s Tony Hawk-inspired burrito and the professional skater’s new video game, Chipotle and Hawk teamed up for a 20-hour livestream on Twitch. The livestream gave away 5,000 burritos to fans watching and featured Hawk along with fellow skateboarder Jagger Eaton and actor Finn Wolfhard playing the Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 and 2 Warehouse Demo. How are you extending your brand invitation?

Chipotle has been experimenting with alternate forms of marketing and technology this year, including accepting Bitcoin as a form of payment, TikTok, a livestreamed YouTube event with Trixie Mattel for Pride Month and sponsoring a Top Chef challenge.

Don’t give in and don’t forget, that in 2018, Wendy’s began using Twitch as a marketing tool. The brand was already known for its social media presence and began on the platform livestreaming Fortnite. Later that year, Wendy’s introduced its own Fortnite character, Wendy. The quick-service chain still has a channel on the service where it runs occasional livestreams of games including Animal Crossing and Fortnite.

So, in 2020, Wendy’s teamed up with Uber Eats to offer a new “Never Stop Gaming” menu featuring five Twitch streamers’ signature Wendy’s meals available exclusively on the delivery app.

New faces use new ideations. U.S. House representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) streamed herself playing the video game Among Us on Twitch. While on the livestream, which was one of the platform’s biggest broadcasts, she encouraged viewers to vote. Senator Bernie Sanders joined the livestream platform during his presidential run, as did President Joe Biden, to reach younger voters.

Are you looking for a new partnership to drive sales? Are you ready for some fresh ideations? Do your food marketing tactics look more like yesterday that tomorrow?  Visit GrocerantGuru.com for more information or contact: Steve@FoodserviceSolutions.us Remember success does leave clues and we just may have the clue you need to propel your continued success.

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