The phrase Beef ‘O’ Brady’s chief executive Chris Elliott uses to describe his 150-unit chain’s revitalization is “coalesce.” Picture half a dozen initiatives meeting at the table. Not all at one time, but slow building over a five-year period that actually began with a competitive lightbulb going off.
Elliott, a former El Pollo Loco franchise CEO and Cinnabon and Church’s Chicken leader, took the reins during 2010. Four years later, Elliott says, https://www.storeholidayhours.org/beef-o-bradys-menu-prices/ scoped its competitive set, brands like Applebee’s and Buffalo Wild Wings, and asked “How can we contend with these people?” Which as a regional player going toe to toe with billion-dollar brands.
“We felt like we could beat them in value,” he says.
That might seem counter intuitive at first. Casual giants steal share from independents and micro-chains by competing at scale. Typically marketing value more aggressively than small company’s budgets could ever allow. “They’ll probably spend more in a month, electronic media and stuff, than we’ll spend in a year,” Elliott says. That and weathering commodity storms with collective purchasing power.
But it was 2010, not 2019. Applebee’s strayed looking at the value-seeker perch and shifted in unfamiliar directions, like the wood-fired grills that launched in 2016. Inflated menus were commonplace, together with LTOs that infused complexity into operations and muddied the ROI of deep discounts. It was, in a large amount of ways, a period when casual chains drifted using their core principles seeking to appeal to a new generation of consumers we didn’t quite understand yet. The “all-things-to-all-people” aftershock of attempting to not get left behind when consumer preference shifts but hasn’t solidified yet.
Elliott says Beef ‘O’ Brady’s saw this unfolding and chose to carve out a niche market in an area many competitors weren’t-everyday value.
“They were kind of going in a different direction from value,” Elliott says of competitors. “And that’s when we said, ‘look, this is an area where we can compete.’ It just happened to be they were leaving from it and that we were diving with it.”
Elliott admits those chains have come back to value, with Chili’s 3 for $10, Applebee’s all-you-can eat deals, Dollarita, as well as other offers. Yet there remains a difference, he says. “They practice it on the promotional basis,” Elliott says. “It exists in our restaurants every day of every week and we support that all through the year with additional promotions allow it some top spin. But our value is perhaps all day, every day.”
“I think the distinction is should you do value you can’t get it done intermittently,” he adds. “It must be element of your DNA.”
Beef ‘O’ Brady’s daily value continues to be key to the resurgence. Notably, Beef ‘O’ Brady’s is taking hardly any price in recent years, unlike many chains seeking to take advantage of wage growth and cover for traffic loss. That’s just not who Beef ‘O’ Brady’s customer is, however. They’re price conscious families that want a good deal. And that’s not just a brand promise Elliott is willing to compromise on.
Here’s an example of how serious beef o bradys hours is on the subject: Franchisees can’t set their very own prices thanks to a new POS system corporate installed.
But the daily deals are the foundation. They work, Elliott says, simply because they don’t change in purpose. Taco Tuesdays, for example, have manage a $5.99 price for five straight years. Burger Mondays (the identical price) hasn’t change, either, and isn’t soon. Wing Wednesdays (varies by store), Fajita Thursdays ($9.99), and Surf & Turf Fridays ($12.99) complete the everyday value platform. And Elliott says they’re adding Saturday and Sunday deals in the near future.
“The franchises are looking for me,” Elliott jokes. “They think we need to take price on this stuff. And I’m saying, consider the results, guys. Glance at the repeat visits that we’re getting on these days of the week. When we eyoaqm sit tight, we carry on and separate ourselves from those who carry on and take price.”
“If you do that,” he adds, “all of sudden your day-to-day deal is not an agreement. It’s just like everything. We’ve had our infernal debates about this but we’ve been consistent to separate ourselves from the competitors, as well as provide not fake value but real value.”
As Elliott says, Beef ‘O’ Brady’s current progress is caused by several changes, not one. Value was just the springboard.