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Chick-fil-A’s PR Recipe

My daughter was hired for her first job recently. She got a job at the brand new Chick-Fil-A in town. It’s the first time Chick-Fil-A has ventured into Cache Valley, Ut., and watching the Public Relations job that it is doing with the citizens of Logan is a lesson in the craft.

The first little bit of PR, I feel, centered on the hiring process. Instead of taking a general hiring, the owners gave a feeling of accomplishment for becoming hired. The owner herself did all the final hiring interviews. The initial interview was conducted by an established Chick-Fil-A employee. Once passed through this initial interview, job applicants then had an interview with the owner.

I understand this may not look initially like PR, but my daughter spread the word. By the time she was hired, she was sold on working for Chick-Fil-A and told everyone.

Soon, radio commercials were airing for the soon-to-be-completed restaurant. My children came home from school with coupons for free chicken sandwiches. All this was to prime the public and work the PR/Marketing angles with Cache Valley.

Once word was out, Chick-Fil-A did the ultimate move, the coupe-de-grace. They announced to the Cache Valley public that when they opened, the first 100 people in line would receive a free Chick-Fil-A meal per week for the next year.

The valley knew the restaurant was coming to town, but the 20,000+ students who attend Utah State University in Logan immediately bit at that bait. The word was out and people were setting up tents in the parking lot.

I drove my daughter to a training meeting and took in the sight. I counted twenty tents in the parking lot. People were all over the parking lot as well, throwing a football, sitting and studying in camp chairs, and talking on their cell phones. The restaurant brought out complimentary heaters and food for them all while they were waiting as well. It was exactly what Chick-Fil-A designed it to be through their PR campaign…a party!

Bravo! I thought to myself as I drove away.

Chick-Fil-A has been open now for three weeks in Logan. I pass by there everyday. I have yet to see an empty drive through. My daughter is working her tail off!

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