California Tortilla introduces the world to “Mexican Re-imagined,” an awareness campaign that tells the story of the brand in a whole new way. The fast-casual chain unveils messaging and advertising designed to reach a growing customer base and communicate what sets them above and apart from the pack. The result: a confident, humorous voice that’s uniquely its own, focusing the spotlight on California Tortilla’s fresh, imaginative Mexican fare.
Since the first store opened in 1995 in Bethesda, Maryland, the fast-casual concept built a name for itself on positive word-of-mouth, developing a loyal fan base of “Cal-Torters,”(aka Burrito Elitos), in the DC area. But with the recent addition of stores in new markets, including Philadelphia and the greater New York City area, and new stores set to open in Florida later this year, California Tortilla faced the challenge of capturing a whole new audience.
“In the past, we focused on driving repeat business from existing customers and building loyalty,” says Laura Cissel, California Tortilla vice president of marketing. “We needed to find the best way to reach our new consumers, define how we communicate our unique positioning in the fast-casual category, and captivate a new audience with that certain ‘something’ that made us so special to our fans.”
The process began with identifying what set them apart from other dining options—adventurous flavor combinations and use of imagination in unlikely places and a commitment to using fresh ingredients and cooking in small batches throughout the day—all without ever taking themselves too seriously. What it boiled down to was “Mexican Re-imagined.”
Core components of the new campaign include radio and traditional billboard ads as well as digital signage, web, and mobile banners. Additionally, the chain has created a toolkit for franchisees, including a culture video to help familiarize them with the new positioning and messaging.
“We’ve grown tremendously over the past few years – but we’ve never strayed from who we are,” says Robert Phillips, president of California Tortilla. “We serve fresh, delicious chef-inspired creations that bring together elements of traditional Mexican cuisine with imaginative flavor combinations, we use only the freshest, highest quality ingredients and prepare everything in small batches throughout the day. That combined with the level of customer service we provide offers a unique dining experience. All along, we have been re-imagining Mexican.”