Red Lobster Freshens Web Site To Extol Brand Position

In an effort to follow the market toward healthier menus, and a "fresh food" brand position, Red Lobster has launched a new rich-media Web site with video features, a "chef's blog," an interactive kitchen, a fresh-fish recipe book and videocasts.

The new Redlobster.com has content on healthy eating and video featuring Red Lobster's senior executive chef Michael LaDuke and executive chef Darryl Mickler. In the Chef's Blog, LaDuke and Mickler answer recipe requests and cooking questions, talk about seafood recipes and tout menu items like Maple-Glazed Salmon and Shrimp, which are featured in new ads.

The two will also host videocasts from different locales. The first will be on Cape Cod, which will feature fresh seafood tips and how-to preparations from Red Lobster.

The Interactive Kitchen feature has a virtual "Chef's Notebook," "Wine Cellar," a Seafood Guide that highlights regional textures and flavors and a Test Kitchen. A Gourmet Gallery comprises videocasts on fish-market shopping secrets and cooking demos.

The site also offers a Virtual Fresh Fish Cookbook with recipes and tips as well as a Seafood & Health section that has a calorie counter.

Richards Group, Dallas, is creative AOR. Digital agency Real Branding, San Francisco and GCI, Atlanta, Red Lobster's PR firm, worked on the rich-media redesign.

A spokesperson says the new site is an extension of Richards Group's new campaign for the Orlando, Fla.-based company, which launched in July to support Red Lobster's foray into a fresh-fish menu expansion. The new effort, which also introduced a new tag line, "Come see what's fresh today," highlights Red Lobster's daily fresh-fish menu, including red snapper, blackened tilapia and rainbow trout.

Also part of the rebranding is a "Maine coast"-themed redesign program for its more than 680 restaurants, the first of which opened in Dallas last month. The company is also introducing new plates, silverware, menus and other table amenities.

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