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Casual chains tout the quality side of value

The past week's best-performing ads pushed top-flight items at a bargain price.
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Photograph: Shutterstock

Casual chains are hoping to put some pizzazz into their sales by incorporating plenty of literal sizzle into their latest TV advertising.

Last week’s 10 most effective spots, according to a ranking of engagement by tracking company EDO, abounded in sizzling items matched with a come-on price: $10, in the case of Chili’s Grill & Bar, for its three-course fajitas meals, and $16.99 for Outback Steakhouse, for its steak and lobster selections.

Upscale food items were the stars of all 10 of the week’s most effective airings. Chili’s alone accounted for four of the top spots, including the No. 1 rank. Applebee’s finished in three top 10 slots with its blitz for Irresist-A-Bowls, a new line of five bowl meals starting at $7.99.

The Irresist-A-Bowls were the only completely new items to be featured in the top 10 airings. Red Lobster landed the Nos. 2 and 4 positions with ads touting Lobsterfest, its annual push for lobster-loving bargain hunters. This year’s push included the kicker that the line of lobster specials is available this year for to-go as well as dine-in service.

Top 10 casual/midscale network primetime TV ads
Feb. 7 – Feb. 24

  1. Chili's 3 for $10 - Chicken and Steak Fajitas - 22.2 SEV
    The Voice (NBC), Feb 24, 9.0M impressions
  2. Red Lobster Lobsterfest to Go - 21.0 SEV
    American Idol (ABC), Feb 23, 7.7M impressions
  3. Chili's 3 for $10 - Chicken and Steak Fajitas :15 - 13.1 SEV
    American Idol (ABC), Feb 23, 7.7M impressions
  4. Red Lobster Lobsterfest to Go - 12.3 SEV
    The Rookie (ABC), Feb 23, 4.9M impressions
  5. Applebee's New Irresist-A-Bowls :30 - 10.9 SEV
    Mom (CBS), Feb 20, 6.3M impressions
  6. Applebee's New Irresist-A-Bowls :15 - 10.9 SEV
    Bob Hearts Abishola (CBS), Feb 24, 5.4M impressions
  7. Outback Steakhouse Lobster and Steak - It's Gone - 9.1 SEV
    American Idol (ABC), Feb 23, 7.7M impressions
  8. Chili's 3 for $10 - Chicken and Steak Fajitas :15 - 8.8 SEV
    FBI: Most Wanted (CBS), Feb 18, 6.2M impressions
  9. Chili's 3 for $10 - Chicken and Steak Fajitas - 7.9 SEV
    Gordon Ramsay's 24 Hours to Hell and Back (FOX), Feb 18, 2.2M impressions
  10. Applebee's New Irresist-A-Bowls :30 - 7.6 SEV
    America's Got Talent (NBC), Feb 22, 2.6M impressions

Source: EDO
SEV = Search Engagement Volume


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