Raise your hand if you love eating burgers. Yep, that’s what I thought!
Don’t be shy! Me too! Eating a fat juicy burger with fries on the side and a Coke is one of my guilty-pleasures. It’s actually mine and my mom’s ritual for every Sunday evening, taking a load off and eating a burger together. This started when I didn’t want to go to my ballet classes when I was 4 so my mom promised me that she would take me to a fast- burger place nearby the dance studio after the class. It’s been going on ever since although I stopped dancing ballet when I was just 10 years old.
There is a study from Mintel showing that burgers are not only my own personal favorite but they also remain to be the Americans’ most favorite indulgence too. Did you know that ‘62% of consumers identify themselves as burger lovers while 37% say they like burgers and 79% of Millennials are saying they consider burgers one of their favorite foods.’ ? The burger market is HUGE and when thinking of fast casual burger restaurants here, I am sure that ‘Five Guys’ is one of the first that comes to mind.
Five Guys started in Washington DC in 1986 when Jerry Murrell and his family opened a burger joint with the goal of cooking hamburgers and fries using only the best quality ingredients. It uses only fresh ground beef, peanut oil and there are no freezers in Five Guys locations, just coolers. I was completely blown away when I learned that there are more than 250,000 possible ways to order a burger because they care about their customer’s allergies! Today, 30 years after, Five Guys has expanded to 1,215 locations alone in the US and a few hundred spanning Canada, UK, Europe and Middle East with total US sales of $1.32 billion dollars in 2016.
How does Five Guys keep its family-owned personality while expanding nonstop? The answer is, it connects directly with customers. Knowing Millennials, especially men, are the burger lovers, it is doing a wonderful job maintaining character which it best illustrates through its voice as being exciting, authentic, remaining fresh in the minds of its audience and making sure it’s consistent throughout all its integrated media platforms, especially digital.
The bright red color of Five Guys makes it impossible for you to take your eyes off its desktop-tablet-mobile friendly website. It is easy to search for, beautifully designed, very visualized, clear, simple yet functional. I myself especially love the part where it includes the Five Guys story on its site which gives me the feeling that when I eat a burger there, it’s not at just any fast casual restaurant but particularly at Five Guys; a warm family place that serves you a fresh home cooked, made from the heart burger. Content is surely key! Moreover, through the website, customers can check the locations, see menus, place orders and give feedback.
Five Guys’ audience is definitely not passive. They are the ‘partners’ and a part of Five Guys’ journey. Its website also engages and reengages customers with the brand by encouraging them to submit their photos to Five Guys. Then, it will select one loyal fan every Friday to be featured across its Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Google+ as the #FiveGuysFanatic. Oh…By the way, did I mention it has 1M followers from those social media platforms? It’s pretty amazing there. Five guys makes full use of social media in terms of customer service and, guaranteed by Hootsuite, it is focusing on engagement metrics and tailoring content based on what works for each social network. Moreover, it also encourages Five Guys’ employees to get involved in the company’s social media, creating fun, local and sincere content. I look forward to seeing Five Guys have a bigger presence on Pinterest as it’s a great platform to post all the aesthetic food photos and recipes!
To create even better experiences for its customers, Five Guys also developed a mobile app which I find very useful location wise, and of course, for making orders. However, I think there is still room for some improvement on this and it could be made even more awesome by adding location-based deals, click to call function, loyalty and referral programs including coupon redemptions.
‘Customer centric’ is surely one of Five Guys’ ways of managing. From the initial ordering to after the burger has been eaten, it most definitely aims to create the best user experience and this makes the company shine. By staying true to its value and culture, I am sure Five Guys will continue doing great in the market and continue to constantly fascinate us in a meaningful way for a long time to come…
For now, back to my burger.
Stay HAPPY guys! 🙂