The RB/FSTEC awards: digital all-stars

RB names industry’s best social media and tech innovators

Best social media event

Winner: Buffalo Wild Wings crashes a grad’s party

To kick off its Alive Events campaign, BWW surprised a Minnesota high school senior with an impromptu graduation party on his front lawn after he commented on Facebook that the chain’s wings were the “perfect graduation food.” The company brought games, Vikings wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson—and, of course, food—and shared a professionally produced video of the festivities on Facebook (14,000 likes) and YouTube (1,000 shares).

Honorable mention: Starbucks plays matchmaker

Love is all about finding the right partner. Starbucks hooked up with Match.com to add a “Meet at Starbucks” feature to the online-dating service’s app that culminated in the World’s Largest Starbucks Date on Feb. 13. Per the Facebook event, hosted by Starbucks, 9,500 people participated.

Honorable mention: Applebee’s earns street cred in Times Square

As part of its marked effort to appeal to millennials, the casual chain threw a party in New York City’s Times Square, which it streamed via live-video app Periscope. Customers shared their pics from the restaurant, which Applebee’s posted on the electronic billboards in real time; it also offered tastings and giveaways from the heart of the city.


More awards
Social media marketer of the year (large and small chains)
Best single social media post
Most surprising use of social media
Social media: most tantalizing food porn
Best app
Best project/team
Tech accelerator, full service
Tech accelerator, limited service
Tech accelerator, nontraditional

Today's top stories

1
Brinker International has shifted the president of its Maggiano’s chain to a marketing and menu-development post at the company's core brand, Chili’s . As Chili’s EVP and chief marketing and...
2
Breakfast continues to be an area of growth and point of focus for operators across segments. But it’s no longer just reserved for the morning hours. Millennials are more interested in breakfast for...
3
Pie Five Pizza has pulled the plug on all eight of its Chicago locations this week as well as its locations in Minneapolis and Denver. The closures came with little notice. According to a statement...
4
Restaurants in Utah are mounting a last-ditch effort to prevent their state from becoming the first in the nation to limit how much alcohol people can drink and still legally drive to roughly one...
5
The parent of the Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s burger chains has named Jason Marker, the former president of KFC’s domestic operations, to succeed Andy Puzder as CEO. Puzder, who has been CEO of CKE...
6
KFC has promoted Kevin Hochman, the creative force behind its offbeat multi-Colonel marketing strategy, to president and chief concept officer of the chain’s rebounding U.S. operations. He succeeds...
7
When Asian chain Wagamama opened its first New York City restaurant in November, it also launched its first brunch menu, starring a breakfast-inspired version of ramen. In scouting locations, Adam...
8
With the growing popularity of brunch, operators are turning to the bar—not just for dining room overflow or selling bloody marys, but as a focal point. Because whether diners are feeling social or...
9
Scratch-made biscuits are not new for Bojangles’. But as more restaurants tout housemade fare, the chicken concept realized it needed to communicate those claims more overtly. “As we go into new...
10
One of the industry’s boogeymen is a tightening labor market that seems to be snatching talented candidates from under hiring managers. “With historically low unemployment rates, you’ve got to move...