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Heinz takes its plea for more restaurant business directly to consumers

Marketing Bites: The ketchup maker will reimburse diners for their restaurant tips if they push for the Heinz condiment; also, celebrity deals, poké tryouts and Elf on the Shelf.
Tip for Heinz
Heinz will reimburse customers the cost of their tips if they add $1 and the phrase "Tip for Heinz" to the receipt. / Image courtesy of Heinz.

Marketing Bites

Kraft Heinz really wants more restaurant business.

First, back in October, its Kraft division asked McDonald’s customers to request that the chain add its macaroni and cheese to the Big Mac.

Now there is this: Its Heinz division will quite literally pay people to ask their restaurants to start serving its ketchup.

The Pittsburgh-based company will reimburse customers for the amount of their restaurant tips, up to $20, as long as they add an extra $1 along with the phrase “Tip for Heinz” to the receipt. Because this is 2022, Heinz also requests that they take a photo and share it on Instagram with the hashtag #TipforHeinz. They can also submit it directly to a website, www.tipforheinz.com.

Heinz will reimburse up to $125,000 worth of restaurant tips through Dec. 21. “Together with fellow ketchup lovers, we hope to work towards a future where fans can expect the unmistakably delicious taste of Heinz whenever they dine out,” Jacqueline Chao, senior brand manager with Heinz, said in a statement.

What’s more, Heinz said it would provide up to a year’s free supply of ketchup to the first 10 locations that actually take customers up on the request.

No word on whether either Kraft or Heinz will start sending restaurant customers directly to the National Restaurant Association Show next year.

No, seriously, try our poké

Poké chains are popping up all over the place. The problem? Not a lot of people know what it is.

So one of these growing chains has a solution for this particular predicament: Just give it away.

Island Fin Poké Co. will give customers free samples starting this week, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. The company will hand out 2-ounce samples to customers in a bid to get them to try it.

Poké, for those of you who do not know, is a Hawaiian staple typically featuring diced raw fish that is marinated, typically with soy sauce, sesame oil and onion. But at fast-casual restaurants such as Island Fin, it is served in a bowl with rice or greens and customizable with a wide range of vegetables and sauces.

Smashburger signs a running back

Smashburger, the Denver-based burger chain, now has a Denver Bronco on its roster: Javonte Williams, running back for the aforementioned professional football team.

Williams is helping the burger chain promote its new product, the decidedly not burger-like chicken wings. The company has been selling those wings for 33% off—Williams’ number is 33—to customers who order using the code Javonte33. The discount is available on Thursdays through Dec. 15. 

Krystal gets another celebrity

Meanwhile, the Atlanta-based Krystal has created a new commercial featuring the radio host and television personality Lenard Larry McKelvey, better known as Charlamagne tha God. He is known for his nationally syndicated radio show called “The Breakfast Club.”

The ads will feature Krystal’s new Side Chiks, little chicken sandwiches. The ad was produced by Krystal’s Creative Marketing Director Ajona “Jax” Camile. McKelvey is also the latest celebrity to be involved with the chain, following rapper 2Chainz and the former NFL player Victor Cruz.  

Elf on the Shelf cake

Not tired of Elf on the Shelf yet? You can now find him on a cake.

Great American Cookies has a deal with the Lumistella Co., which owns the venerable elven brand. Customers can get an Elf on the Shelf cookie cake now through Dec. 24. Customers choose the cookie variety and it features customized border icing color options.

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