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Old 02-10-2011, 08:24 AM
Location: Brookline, MA
613 posts, read 1,971,967 times
Reputation: 358


I must agree, I've hesitated to respond since I found your original post quite passive-aggressive and a bit rude. If you have a question about your experience with unfriendliness in Boston, by all means, ask away, but don't ask for help on advertising/marketing and do an unrelated aside about how mean we all are. But, I digress.

I don't mind Applebees, but I can't tell you the last time I've been to one in Boston (and I don't live too far from the one in Brighton/Cleveland Circle). Applebees is a lower-end chain. Nothing wrong with that. It's great for families and, in general, people who want to/need to eat out and want sit down, but not too expensive. It's on the same level as say Uno's and Ruby Tuesday. And you'll notice there aren't too many of these places within Boston. And the ones that are in Boston are in a better location. Both Boston Applebees are in somewhat out of the way spots. The Unos in Kenmore Sq. probably does well, but it's in some seriously prime real estate a block from Fenway Park and right next to BU dorms.

One of the advantages of living in the city is the sheer variety of restaurant options. Many of them individually owned, local chains, upscale chains, or just plainer hipper than Applebees. There are a lot of economical options. I can have some great Thai food for the same price as my Oriental Chicken Salad wrap. And, I'm in the mood for a burger in Cleveland Circle, I'll go to Cityside across the street.

I'm sure Applebees fares well in the Boston suburbs as it does in most suburbs. But I know what Applebees is, I know what's on the menu and where it is. It's not about the quality of the advertising. And, like I said, I don't mind the food or the atmosphere and if I'm traveling or in area where chains dominate, it'll be on the list, but other than suggesting better locations or cheap discounts, I won't really make a point of eating in one Boston. Nothing personal against Applebees, I'm not really going to the other big national chains either because there are so many other places to go.

I'm not anti-chain - I actually do get a hankering for chain food and go to places like Cheesecake Factory and PF Chang's, but the food is more upscale.

Now, you offer major discounts - 1/2 price food or buy one get one, then maybe I'll go.

In general, if I'm paying the premium to live in the city, I'm going to take advantage of amenities that come with a urban city, such as the variety of eating establishments. If I wanted to be in suburbia, I'd pay less and live in suburbia.
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Old 02-10-2011, 01:48 PM
329 posts, read 450,918 times
Reputation: 399
what channels are you utilizing and what is your budget? I work in analytics at an ad agency and if this was my client, and this client is indeed a mid-budget national chain, then I would highly recommend the client invest his/her marketing dollars in a city where they would go further. And I'm not saying that as a snarky Boston resident, I'm saying that because attitudes toward chain brands are different here which would require expensive re-working of the message.
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