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Moe’s Southwest Grill readies first national ad campaign

Two new TV commercials tout the fast-casual chain’s customizable menu

Moe’s Southwest Grill will launch its first national advertising campaign Monday in an effort to increase brand awareness.

“We have a lot of great engagement. [There are] people who know us and love us, but we just need more people to be aware of the brand,” said Moe’s chief marketing officer Paul Macaluso. “The spots themselves are really just about our brand and our brand positioning.”

The campaign, developed with Columbus, Ohio-based Engauge, includes two 30-second TV commercials, one featuring a skydiver and the other a fashion designer. The ads intend to showcase Moe’s fast-casual, welcoming atmosphere, as well as flexibility and quality, he said.

“They’re focused on the food and the environment,” Macaluso said, adding that the commercials also celebrate originality.

“At Moe’s Southwest Grill, we know everyone is original, so we offer over 20 fresh ingredients to make burritos and other creations as unique as you,” a voiceover in each of the ads says.

The ads’ target audience is men and women ages 18-49, he said. Moe’s customers tend to be educated, affluent consumers who are conscious of nutrition. The brand will air ads on ESPN, E!, CBS Sports and TNT, among other channels.

The structure of the campaign would allow for more commercials to be added over time with the same messaging, Macaluso said. However, he added, the company does not currently have plans to run more ads during 2013. “But we’re kind of keeping flexible in case this thing really explodes,” he said.

The ads will have two runs during 2013. The first, which starts March 11, will run for four weeks and is targeting 42 million impressions. The second will run this summer.

Moe’s already has a robust social and digital marketing strategy, according to Macaluso, and just needs to broadly spread the word about the brand.

Moe’s is owned by Atlanta-based Focus Brands Inc., the parent company of Schlotzsky’s, Carvel, Cinnabon and Auntie Anne’s Pretzels.  Moe’s has nearly 500 locations systemwide.

Contact Erin Dostal at [email protected].
Follow her on Twitter: @ErinDostal

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