El Pollo Loco
El Pollo Loco is a regional QSR brand based in Orange County, California with 480+ company- and franchised-owned locations in California, Texas and Nevada. Retail sales were staying consistent but they needed to grow the business off-premise. We were retained to improve their family meal menu category, grow the catering business and support the team with retail menu panel design/testing.
Working with the VP of food and beverage we brought on an outside food innovation group to refresh and elevate family meals including upgrades to the packaging. Catering sales were low at <5% of the business. No formal catering structure existed. I drafted a catering pro-forma including needed operations and marketing plan. We refined and narrowed customer targeting, updated the menu, added tools for store teams, and initiated launch of online ordering.
The project expanded to include qualitative consumer research to assess perceptions of the brand, test new menu strategy, and develop local store marketing tools. Given Teresa’s experience working in franchised-environments we worked cross-functionally within the organization to bridge the relationship between the team and franchisee in Dallas to drive brand equity within the market.