In 1977 a Southern institution was founded in Charlotte, North Carolina: Bojangles’ Chicken ’n Biscuits.
Now, over 35 years and with nearly 575 locations later, they are more commonly known as Bojangles’ Famous Chicken ’n Biscuits!
While they are known for their fresh chicken, biscuits and delicious sweet tea, prior to 2011, the brand was not known for its online presence or its digital marketing campaigns. With a need to overcome complex marketing challenges, Bojangles’ was looking for a fresh approach to marketing and promotions, connecting with online fans in meaningful ways, driving in-store traffic via digital channels and supporting revenue goals.
Order up for UNION! After ordering a fresh round of made-from-scratch biscuits and tea for the team, we started wrapping smart strategies and technology solutions together for the brand. Since then, UNION has worked to develop a sustainable digital ecosystem that supports a (now strong) digital fan culture for a regional hero brand.
- 02 08
A Seamless Agency Partnership
Since Bojangles’ agency of record, BooneOakley, was launching the “It’s Bo Time!” campaign, it was UNION’s job to activate the campaign and its various promotional components in the digital space.
Our work with BooneOakley provided Bojangles’ with a best-of-breed scenario, in which a top advertising agency and a top digital agency combined forces to deploy a seamless new campaign for the brand — achieving and surpassing online and offline program objectives and goals.
UX & Content Strategy
In recent years, local and state governments enacted regulations requiring restaurant operators with more than 20 units to list calories and other nutritional data for regular food items on their menus. At the same time, most limited-service restaurant brands began adding and emphasizing lower-calorie items and launched lower-calorie menus in an effort to support healthier eating.
As a matter of fact, since the mid-2000s, most LSR sales growth came from the transition to lower-calorie items. Those that did not make the transition actually declined in sales during that period.
Therefore, it was paramount to our strategy that we create a strong digital platform and experience for new product communications, while supporting the necessary benefits of communicating nutritional values for all Bojangles’ items and product combinations.
That said, providing ingredient insights and calorie counts to online customers to make it easier for those guests to understand what they are consuming turned out to be a much more dynamic exercise than imagined.
Planning the Framework
Bojangles' menu includes over 30 different entrees, 10 types of side items, 12 drink choices and countless meal, dinner, box and combo combinations. There are many choices and variables to consider — and there are even greater content variables when approaching administrating items. For the new online customer experience, we would have to craft an entirely new approach for the Bojangles’ team, one that enables the marketing and promotions and product development teams with product communication flexibility.
The nutritional values needed to display accurately for all menu items, including all possible meal, dinner, box and combo combinations. To up the ante even further, it is common for Bojangles’ to tweak its recipes, thereby changing the nutritional values on a fairly regular basis. The digital platform would require a database and content management strategy that would allow for an easy, scalable approach to the way nutritional values are recorded.
Designing the Experience
UNION crafted and delivered a highly custom digital marketing ecosystem that continually delivers a fun Famous Chicken 'n Biscuits feast for the eyes.
Fresh Designs Served Daily
Bojangles’ boasts a tremendous community of passionate and loyal fans, due in no small part to its irresistible food fare, which is paired with an enjoyable brand experience. Therefore, any new design work needed to deliver the same enjoyable customer experience that Bojangles’ fans have come to expect from the brand. All new design work would also need to deliver a great, integrated look and feel with the “It’s Bo Time!” campaign.HomeBo Locator
- 05 08
Find Bo on the Go
To continue rounding out a robust digital customer experience, Bojangles’ would also need a mobile-optimized brand experience to satisfy customers who are on the go and using their mobile devices to access restaurant information and promotional content.
UNION's work on the mobile extension of the digital platform delivered an experience that was well optimized for connected devices, providing quick and convenient access to information on nearby Bojangles’ locations, the full restaurant menu and weekly specials. In order to provide the brand’s marketing team with a fully synchronized content management solution, UNION built the mobile website's content within the same contentcontent management system that supports Bojangles.com.
For Bojangles’, the system serves as an innovative and dynamic way to leverage digital technology to increase sales and traffic at actual store locations.
- 06 08
For product trials and promotions, UNION developed a customized online reservation system and engine to support timely promotional activities and drive customers to stores. The promotional system's design is flexible, allowing Bojangles' to run an unlimited number of special promotions (specific to unique locations) while allowing the customer to make an online reservation for a free product pickup.
Once engaged with the reservation system, users can select the free product they are interested in, as well as the date, time and location for their pickup. Coupons are then dynamically generated and delivered via email that is embedded with a print feature that restricts coupons to single usage. After coupons are redeemed, those customers then receive a follow-up email – creating additional marketing opportunities.
- 07 08
How to Add 30,000 Likes in Three Weeks
With a raving fan base, Bojangles’ also decided to expand its social media strategy and engage their social fans. For this task, UNION wanted to create a custom, branded Facebook app that encouraged fans to spread the word about Bojangles’ and invite their fans to get involved with the brand. So, after seeking another round of perfectly seasoned inspiration from our local Bojangles’ restaurant, our team dove right in, developing a fun and intuitive user experience.
The Friend Biscuit
The Friend Biscuit is a Facebook app that challenges users to amass the most friends who also “like” Bojangles’ on Facebook. As brand-fan friends grow, so does the height of a virtual biscuit on Bojangles' Facebook pages. Essentially, the app stuffed a virtual biscuit with the profile pictures of friends that also like Bojangles’. Then, the system rewarded users for growing their Friend Biscuit with gift cards and other prizes including — wait for it — free Bojangles’ for a year!WelcomeTop 50Grand Prize
“Not only does this new digital playform let us better connect with our fans, it also allows us to be much more agile as a company. The content management system UNION created makes the process of managing everything from promotions to nutritional values extremely simple. It's much faster and more flexible, which means we can give our fans the most up-to-date information as soon as we get it.”
With a robust website, a mobile experience, an online reservation system and a Facebook app, Bojangles’ now has a comprehensive digital presence that is as expansive as their fan base. That is the type of recipe that the UNION team likes cooking.183K Newsletter