Industry News | March 5, 2015

Krystal Contracts with New Branding Agencies

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The Krystal Company, known for its iconic square burgers, announced a new agency lineup to support the brand’s marketing efforts: 22squared was named creative agency of record, NewFire Media as digital agency of record, Ink Link Marketing as PR and promotions agency of record, and the Johnson Group as co-op and media buying agency of record. The agencies, whose assignments are effective immediately, will report to the brand’s CMO, Jason Abelkop, and his senior team.

 “We’ve selected some of the best in their industries to help us aggressively pursue new paths to expand the deep passion for and heritage of our brand,” says Jason Abelkop, Chief Marketing Officer for the Krystal Company.

22squared, one of the largest independent, full-service advertising agencies in the country, was named the named creative agency of record. 22squared provides a wide range of retail experience in building brand awareness and driving customer acquisition, retention, and advocacy. They specialize in creating meaningful content that is seamlessly integrated across all channels.

The agency supports other iconic brands including American Standard, Baskin-Robbins, Dunkin' Donuts, Publix Super Markets Inc., SunTrust, and more. They have been recognized for their work with numerous creative accolades including a number of recent EFFIEs for advertising effectiveness. 22squared has offices in Atlanta and Tampa.

NewFire Media, an online advertising agency dedicated to improving ROI in digital media, will serve as Krystal’s new digital agency of record. They will manage the brand’s website, social media pages, and online media buying with a unified digital strategy. In addition to bringing 30 years of marketing experience to Krystal, NewFire serves other brands like Realtree, TaxSlayer, and On The Border.  NewFire, a Google Premier Partner, is headquartered in North Augusta, South Carolina, with a satellite office in Atlanta.

Ink Link Marketing LLC was tapped as the PR and promotions agency of record for Krystal. In this capacity, Ink Link will work closely with the marketing team to ideate and execute complementary public relations efforts, promotional tie-ins, events, and internal communications.

The full-service public relations agency brings more than 35 years of combined experience in the restaurant and hospitality space. Ink Link’s portfolio includes Church’s Chicken, Ovation Brands (parent company to Ryan’s, HomeTown Buffet, and Old Country Buffet), and MIC Food, plus other non-restaurant clients. Voted Agency of the Year by Bulldog Reporter and Partner of the Year by the Armed Services YMCA, Ink Link provides a team of PR specialists from coast to coast, with offices in Miami and Los Angeles.

The Johnson Group, a Chattanooga-based full-service marketing and advertising agency, will continue to serve as the co-op and media buying agency of record to support the brand’s marketing and promotional strategies as well as media buying for the brand.  The Johnson Group has a long-standing relationship with Krystal, nearing 10 years on the brand’s agency roster. The firm has won EFFIE Awards for challenger brands in the highly competitive food and beverage and wireless communications categories as well as numerous local, regional, and national ADDYs. 

The Johnson Group has extensive experience in food and beverage and QSR, including Sunbelt Granola Bars, Mayfield Dairy, PET milk and ice cream, Little Debbie, Double Cola, and Dean Foods.

“We are confident that the agencies we have selected will add valuable creative input to our brand,” Abelkop says. “The collective power of the firms selected will propel Krystal’s engagement with our guests to a higher level.”

News and information presented in this release has not been corroborated by QSR, Food News Media, or Journalistic, Inc.

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