|Great Scott Davis, Bright Idea!
By: Briskman Stanfield
When mystery is thrown in the pot, people will chase clues faster than one can say, "My dear Watson!" There’s a little Sherlock in all of us. Taking advantage of human nature, Panera has created a clever campaign that appeals to more than just the inquisitive mind. It shoots straight to the customer’s healthy heart while keeping them in their privy loop.
If you haven’t heard, ‘Hidden Menu’ is the word and only one part of a commanding mix that stirs this great promo in motion. While Panera is not the first to stage a menu mystery scene, this restaurant stands out as it combines the elements of sleuthing with the thrill of fit reward.
Yesiree, Panera knows how to utilize current words that can push a customer’s health-conscience buttons. After their attention is piqued with a hidden unadvertised menu (viewable online at MyPanera), more great meaningful words come into sight.
For example, ‘Power’ is added before every ‘all natural' word combo that describes the high-protein, low-carb alternative entrées in selections offered for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. These appetizing dishes are displayed in images with just the right (amount of) words to speak strongly and succinctly to concerned fit foodies, plus they offer a nutritional breakdown.
Such an ingenious ‘Hidden Power Menu’ that works miraculously by word of mouth was developed by inventive thinking Executive Scott Davis, aka Panera’s Bread’s Chief Concept Officer. A man who attributes his own lifestyle balance and successful weight loss to a similar eating approach that prompted his Hidden Menu thinking for Panera.
However, no matter how hidden this menu might be, it is no (shhhh) secret to all associates who work for Panera. They are in the loop, ready to take any off-the-menu order from customers who speak the (sshh) lingo. Just give it try.
Panera’s Hidden Menu made its debut last November, but has only become available in all bakery-cafes since the beginning of the New Year, in time to kick off all the resolutions for better eating choices.
Yet under the microscope many have wondered why a restaurant would go to the trouble of offering an extra menu, let alone one of the clandestine types, when the original was working just fine. The answer is also no secret. Panera means business. It is a company with over 1600 locations in 44 states and recently branched out to Canada.
Clearly being tuned into people, their lifestyles, and their tastes is a significant factor that contributes to Panera’s thriving growth. So compliments to the brilliant concept chief, Scott Davis, and all the ad people who knew how to take the idea and put it in just the right powerful words.
Briskman Stanfield is a freelance copywriter and all-around, behind-the-scenes team player.
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