El Pollo Loco Holdings Inc kicked off the 2023 year with a special limited-time offer of Loco Burrito Grillers, offering the Sonoran-inspired burritos, in both beef and chicken, with a version of the consommé that accompanied the popular Shredded Beef Birria LTO.
The food item was a big hit with food content creators and short form content creators on TikTok, which helped the company experience a 7.8% sales spike during the first quarter, according to National Restaurant News.
The company said birria was the most successful new product launch the brand had ever implemented.
“You see a lot of a Sonoran-type of influence in the box itself,” said Andrew Rebhun, El Pollo Loco’s chief marketing officer, said during a talk this week (via NRN). “It photographs beautifully. The color pops on it and it really allows us to have some Instagram-able and TikTok content that really allows this product to have some legs. I think you’ll see some more boxes from us — hint, hint — throughout the 2023 calendar year.”
With so much uncertainty regarding the future of TikTok in the United States, with a number of states already taking action, the company will continue to lean on it as well as their digital marketing strategies during the roll out of their new loyalty program.
“We’ll monitor to see what the federal government has to say about TikTok,” Rebhun said. “I think we’re going to just continue to lean in with authenticity on that platform. We have a number of folks who just post generic reviews about the brand that we really like to showcase. We have a really strong influencer group that we work with on a regular basis, so I would state that we’re going to continue to monitor the situation and lean in or pull back as necessary.”
“It has so many redesigned elements,” he said of the loyalty platform. “It’s going to compete with the likes of Chick-fil-A, Starbucks and some of the top competitors in loyalty.”