Generating attention and attendees for a large national restaurant chain’s grand opening events.
A well-known restaurant/entertainment company with more than 84 large-venue, high-volume locations throughout North America, Dave & Buster’s (D&B) had an established brand but needed help orchestrating a Grand Opening move to its new location in Buffalo’s Walden Galleria Mall from an existing location in another mall in Williamsville, NY. The popular restaurant chain also had plans to open a new location at Marketplace Mall in Rochester, NY. Martin Davison Public Relations (MDPR) was tasked with promoting the 200+ local job opportunities and inviting targeted customers to the VIP grand opening events, with a goal of attracting 900 attendees to each event.
Known for its food and beverages, games, attractions and sporting events, the VIP grand openings needed to showcase everything D&B had to offer. Complimentary food, drinks and gaming were provided at the event to attract the 21-34-year-old target audience. We made it a priority to get on the radar of groups with a large millennial presence to ensure the event’s success. These groups included young professional associations, sports teams, local gyms and athletic complexes, intramural leagues, college graduate programs, alumni groups, local businesses with a large millennial staff, and more. By connecting with group leaders that had an extensive network within the target age group, we were able to email the invitation to a larger group of members. We had eight weeks to pull off each event, so we immediately began compiling guest lists double the 900+ attendance goal to ensure our success. We also invited members of the media to a media day in each market. In addition to the media days and VIP events, MDPR implemented a wide range of public relations services to gain media coverage, including morning show previews, live-shots and post-opening interviews to generate awareness and excitement surrounding the new locations.
The media results were tremendous and included several days of broadcast, morning show, mid-day and evening news coverage on all the local television stations, resulting in 75 pieces of news coverage in print, television and online. Reporters, editors and staff members from each area media outlet also turned out in double digits. Additionally, MDPR’s targeted invites to potential new Dave & Buster’s customers resulted in sold-out VIP events with more than 1,100 RSVPs and attendees at each grand opening. The events exceeded expectations, with sold-out attendance and extensive media coverage resulting in an estimated 1.1 million impressions. The buzz and awareness created was exceptional, based on the client’s standards.
The events themselves were seamless and highly successful, with guests sticking around to play games and sample the food and drink until closing time. The client was extremely pleased with the turnout and media results.