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Now that’s what I call Marketing: Chipotle

August 31, 2009

We’re starting a new segment here on 4WY, Now That’s What I Call Marketing.

We spend a lot of time as consumers, and sometimes we just see a company that is doing such a good job we’d like to toss it out there as an example of what someone in Generation Y appreciates in a branded company, and that’s what this segment is all about. And our initial winner is Chipotle.

5 Things we love about Chipotle:

1)Their integrated Marketing approach. Everything about Chipotle has a marketing aspect, from the employees shirts to advertising Food Inc in stores. The stories printed on the cups tell us facts (Chipotle is the No. 1 purchaser of fresh avocadoes in the US) that supports the marketing of the food (Chipotle is all about fresh food.) Even their trucks have funny, memorable marketing communications written on them. Check out the back of their trucks the next time you’re in traffic. It’s worth it.

Funny trucks... Just another marketing strategy from Chipotle

Funny trucks... Just another marketing strategy from Chipotle

2) Their responsiveness. We wrote in to Chipotle as consumers, and their response was virtually immediate. In today’s world of immediacy, you have to appreciate that move. (Now if they only had a Twitter account…)

3) Staying true to the theme: Chipotle as a brand has stayed true to it’s plan: Serve fresh, natural food. Serve it well. Even though we’d love to see a line-extension into breakfast, you have to appreciate a brand that stays true to the goal. One of the things you always hear about brands is that the best ones know what they do well. And it’s obvious from reading their responses that every employee understands Steve Ells’ goal of creating the perfect burrito.

4) The decor: Part of staying true to the theme is the interior design. And I’ve appreciated a restaurant this is willing to forego traditional QSR designs in favor of making a memorable experiment.

5) The committment to corporate social responsibility. Chipotle recycles, it buys naturally raised meats, and the chain purchases local vegetables. And they sponsored Food Inc, the movie. This isn’t easy for a restaurant to do, and they could certainly increase margins if they didn’t. But this is a differentiation strategy that seperates them from the dollar-menunaires, and it’s worked.

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