Chili’s names O’Keefe Reinhard & Paul Agency of Record

Chili's burger tray

Chili’s burger tray

(Chicago — 4 May 2018) Chili’s Grill & Bar, a leading casual dining restaurant brand owned by Brinker International, Inc. (NYSE:EAT), has named O’Keefe Reinhard & Paul its agency of record.

The move follows the success of recent marketing initiatives launched by Chili’s and solidifies their relationship with OKRP, which started on a project basis after a creative review last year.

Following the debut of its initial campaign that updated Chili’s legendary jingle, “Chili’s Is Back, Baby,” in Oct. 2017, Chili’s has experienced a steady improvement in sales and traffic. In an earnings call earlier this week, Chili’s announced that the guest is responding to investments they’ve made to increase quality, consistency and value.

“We entered into a ‘dating’ relationship last year with OKRP at a time when our brand was experiencing significant traffic declines,” said Steve Provost, chief marketing and innovation officer. “The entire OKRP team has been by our side as we have climbed out of the ditch. Tom, Matt and the entire team have blown us away with their creativity and their responsiveness to a fast moving business. The ‘Chili’s is Back’ advertising campaign has broken through the ‘sea of sameness’ and connected with our core guests and our team members. Given the strength of this partnership, we feel it’s time to ditch our ‘commitment’ issues and cement an enduring partnership with this dynamic young agency.”

Provost took on the role of Chili’s CMO just as the creative review was underway last year with a vow to help Chili’s break out in the category defined by similar advertising, food and brand imagery. ” He has overseen a revamping of the Chili’s menu, a focus on food and amplified marketing in traditional broadcast, digital in-restaurant, print, public relations, radio and social.

“We’ve developed a strong collaborative relationship with the whole team at Chili’s and are pleased with the business momentum we’ve created together,” said Tom O’Keefe, CEO of OKRP. “Getting results is really the only thing that matters, and we’re looking forward to doing everything we can to help Chili’s build for a successful future.”

 
About Chili’s
Chili’s Grill & Bar is the flagship brand of Dallas-based Brinker International, Inc. (NYSE: EAT), a recognized leader in casual dining. Known for their signature menu items – burgers, fajitas, ribs and margaritas – Chili’s offers fresh, bold and unexpected flavors. Each ChiliHead at more than 1,600 locations in 32 countries and two territories takes great pride in Chili’s purpose of connecting with and serving Guests and giving back to the communities in which they are located. In addition to Chili’s, Brinker owns and operates Maggiano’s Little Italy®. For more brand-related information, click here.

 
About OKRP
Chicago-based O’Keefe Reinhard & Paul (www.okrp.com), named by Advertising Age as a 2018 “Agency to Watch” and “Small Agency of the Year” 2015, is a new model advertising agency that delivers big agency brand creativity with startup ingenuity. With its belief that success as a new model agency relies on the ability to be nimble and to bring together the best talent for its clients, O’Keefe Reinhard & Paul has practiced the “high art of selling” on behalf of clients such as Chili’s, Groupon, Gildan, Big Lots, YUM! Brands, Ace Hardware and Turtle Wax among others. The independent agency is supported with minority backing from the Interpublic Group of Companies.

 
Send your agency updates to Reel Chicago Editor Dan Patton, dan@reelchicago.com.

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