Russell House Tavern

Using a Blog to Launch a Restaurant

Challenge

A high-profile Cambridge-based restaurant group planned to open its fourth restaurant in an extremely visible location  in Harvard Square with a highly-respected opening team. The Grafton Group sought marlo’s help in managing communications pre-opening on their terms and timeline, while at the same time maintain a grassroots sense of excitement and begin brand engagement with future patrons.


Strategy

We proposed the creation of a RHT blog, designed to communicate news of the build out, menu creation, staff hiring, and all of the little details that go into creating a restaurant.  We provided the client with suggested “hot” topics and then edited all content while maintaining each individual author’s ‘(chef, bar manager, GM, owners) voice.’

We launched the blog one month  prior to the planned opening date.  At that time, we also distributed postcards with only the URL and a brief message that we sent to the media to alert them of the blog’s existence.  Finally, we also made sure their Facebook and Twitter pages went live simultaneously to build followers in advance of opening.

russell-house-tavern-blog


Results

By opening day, the blog had received 19,119 visits. Not only did media placements drive those numbers, as evidenced by the 1,374 blog visits on the day that Thrillist hit, but our client’s willingness to handle their opening in a creative and not-seen-before manner resulted in a story in metro Boston that positioned them as a social media trendsetter, further adding credibility to their new restaurant.

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