In-N-Out Burger’s cult status was confirmed for me by a story I read by a well known branding expert who teaches restaurant marketing at a major university in the Midwest. She was in swank Newport Beach during the Christmas holidays attending a wine tasting holiday party. You know the type–lovely food, cool guests, wonderful wines, affluent old friends. It was going quite well when all of a sudden around 10 pm dozens and dozens of Double-Doubles appeared…hot, juicy, neatly wrapped and ready to be paired with…well, a Pinot Noir. It caused a sensation as tray after tray of ready-to-eat burgers circulated through the re-energized crowd of guests leaving a trail ooh’s and aah’s in its wake. Apparently, In-N-Out Burger even has an “In-N-Out-mobile” that you can schedule to visit your event…if you have the foresight to schedule months in advance. And Yes, they have had it running years before the Kogi craze ever came on the scene.
Every now and then, it’s important for every restaurant owner and brand to ask the question: “What legendary stories has our restaurant marketing team inspired lately?” Great brands really do inspire their own type of brand folklore. Passionate guests with powerful brand loyalty make brands legendary by passing on their powerful stories. Word of mouth restaurant marketing is the best marketing a restaurant could ever hope for.
In-and-Out Burger possesses hundred of those legendary tales. And many people have their own stories. Yes, the ingredients are fresh, the menu very simple, the workers all fresh faced youngsters right out of Mayberry. The food may not be exceptionally outstanding, but the mystique created and collected and preserved by loyal followers makes the difference…right down to the little bible verses imbedded under the bottom cup rims.
All this made me realize that this really is the hallmark of a powerful brand…a brand so powerful that it breeds legendary stories by passionate fans with powerful reactions. Nordstrom used to inspire this kind of legendary story…it still occasionally does.
What is the legacy and legend your restaurant is producing today?