Bob Evans Restaurants has recruited Ohio State Buckeyes coach Urban Meyer as its new brand representative, dubbing him its “Head Breakfast Coach.”
The family dining restaurant chain, which was founded and is headquartered in Columbus, Ohio, says it selected Meyer because he was born and raised in Toledo, Ohio, is a fan of the restaurant chain, and “embodies the same values the family dining restaurant was founded on — a down-to-earth, generous, hardworking way of life that is 'The Ohio Way.'”
He’s also extremely popular with Ohioans, having led the Buckeyes to a national championship in 2014.
The rep deal includes TV, radio, digital, social and in-restaurant advertising, as well as a dedicated landing page.
Urban will help the chain promote its new “Everything Breakfast” (three scrambled eggs, sausage, ham, bacon, hash browns and other ingredients).
He will also be featured in a football-season campaign for Bob Evans’ introduction of biscuit bowls (biscuits filled with toppings). Starting in October, that marketing will include social media and a sweepstakes.
After closing 27 underperforming restaurants in 2016, Bob Evans Farms Inc. last year sold its restaurant division for $565 million to private equity firm Golden Gate Capital, which also owns the Red Lobster and California Pizza Kitchen chains. Bob Evans Inc. opted to focus on the faster-growing, more profitable Bob Evans Foods packaged food business.
According to Restaurant Business’s 2018 Top 500 restaurant rankings, based on Technomic data, Bob Evans Restaurants was ranked #51 in Restaurant Business’s 2018 Top 500 restaurant rankings, based on Technomic data. Its estimated 2017 sales of $910 million were down 4.3% versus 2016, and its units were down 2.3%.
According to the chain, it currently has 495 locations in 18 U.S. states, primarily in the Midwest, mid-Atlantic and Southeast regions.