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More chains should let customers skip the Father’s Day marketing

Marketing Bites: A small number of companies are getting in on opt-out emails, Chipotle travels back to 1993 and more marketing news of the week.
Father's Day
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Welcome to RB’s weekly roundup of the latest developments in restaurant marketing.

It’s Father’s Day on Sunday, a fact you’d likely know even without a calendar, thanks to the flood of email offers you’ve probably received suggesting you treat Dad to a steak dinner, take your pop out for a discounted frozen yogurt or treat a father figure to a meal of endless fondue. (These are all actual pitches I’ve received.)

For lots of folks, though, being reminded of Father’s Day (or Mother’s Day, for that matter) doesn’t inspire celebration. Maybe they’ve recently lost their mom or dad, are estranged or have an otherwise complicated relationship with their parents.

A couple of years ago, I started seeing companies offer the ability to opt out of Mother’s Day and Father’s Day marketing.

Artisanal scoop shop chain Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams was an early adopter of this option.

This year’s email from Jeni’s, sent to customers early this month, reads, “We know Father’s Day is a really difficult time for some people. This year, like every year, we’re giving you the chance to opt out of our Father’s Day emails. We’ll keep you updated with what’s new—we just won’t send you anything related to Father’s Day.” 

I also received an opt-out message from DoorDash, saying “We understand that Father’s Day may be a difficult time for some. Let us know if you’d prefer to be removed from additional messages this year.”

I got similar emails from other organizations and companies this year (including Etsy and the Wisconsin Democratic Party), offering me the chance to skip the Mother’s Day and Father’s Day messaging.

But I haven’t seen any others from restaurant brands.

When your business revolves around hospitality, this seems like a simple, elegant act to put your customers at ease and make them feel more welcome during a potentially fraught time of year.

Chipotle parties like it's 1993

Chipotle Mexican Grill on Wednesday launched its latest merch offering, the 1993 Collection, in honor of the year in which the burrito chain was founded.

The retro collection harkens back to that magical year when your Marketing Bites columnist graduated from high school, with an anorak, rugby polo, socks, “dad hat” and slide sandals that feature Chipotle’s original logo and coloring.

Chipotle Mexican Grill

Chipotle's 1993 Collection/Photo courtesy Chipotle Mexican Grill

“The new collection helps bring Chipotle’s origin story to life and taps into Gen Z’s growing attraction to nostalgia,” the chain said in a press release. (Nostalgia? Nostalgia! I am trying not to take this personally.)


The NFL has a new official pizza-pizza.

A whole new crop of chefs and restaurateurs will be able to use the phrase “James Beard Award winner” in their press releases now.  

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