Jollibee approached JIN in 2020 to support launching new restaurants across Europe, starting with two sites in Liverpool and Leicester, then the flagship in Leicester Square and the first site in Spain in 2021. We then rolled out the same successful store launch strategy to another seven sites across the UK.
Jollibee was relatively unknown outside the Filipino community in the UK. As a saturated market, with several large American-based competitors including KFC, McDonald’s and Burger King, as well as disruptor newcomers including Popeyes, the challenge was to launch Jollibee’s new stores to a wide audience of Gen Z and millennials, drive trial and generate buzz around the brand.
COVID-19 added a new challenge to open new restaurants with social distancing regulations in place and economic uncertainty.
How to promote a Filipino fast food in the UK since the market is already saturated?
How to attract a wide audience of Gen Z and millenials and generate buzz around the brand?
How to communicate on new restaurants opening while social distancing is in place?
JIN developed an integrated launch strategy combining media relations, Instagram and TikTok activity, influencer partnerships and launch events to raise awareness of the stores opening locally and drive trial of Jollibee:
Pre-launch buzz: Pre-launch press release announcing the opening day across consumer, trade and business publications with clear, consistent brand message. Invite one or two key journalists to visit the store before the official opening for a “first look” and exclusive trial of the menu.
Influencer event: Evening before the opening, influencer event at the restaurant with DJ and photo-booths, to provide exclusive access to those with a strong social media presence to influence locally. Capture content to send to journalists and for social and digital content.
Official launch: Attract crowds and attention at the official store launch with giveaways for the first 100 customers, the mascot entertaining the queues and a red ribbon cutting ceremony. Photos and videos of the launch sent to journalists for further local coverage.
Maintaining momentum: Gift cards to local journalists and influencers to continue to drive reviews of the restaurant and food. Content shared across TikTok and Instagram to continue driving trial.
Media Outreach Strategy
To secure coverage in local and national media, for both consumer and trade publications, JIN created a phased strategy to generate buzz about Jollibee’s restaurants, increase awareness of the brand and maintain momentum after launches.
1. Creation of detailed press packs with images to introduce journalists to the brand and menu, showcasing the premium look and feel of the restaurant 2. Relationship building with local journalists through calls, meetings and personalised pitches 3. Inviting key journalists to exclusive ‘first look’ of restaurants for review of menu and pre-launch media coverage. Meet and greet with free meal 4. Pitching all major local media outlets on launch day with live photos and videos of the launch 5. Following up with gift cards, product launches, menu updates and creative story pitches to keep interest and momentum
pieces of coverage across national, regional, business and trade media
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