Hollywood Alley’s advertising: no agency required

30 Oct

Advertising is much more than a clever slogan tacked to the back of your truck. Branding is certainly more than a logo. I’ve regularly discussed this here and in my other writing –about experiential branding, and grass-roots marketing.

So I was glad to hear back from a company I had written about here on the blog. It’s a long comment, but fully worth a read. It’s about a form of “advertising” – a simple $12 dollar sign printed at Staples — people normally might dismiss as pre-Web 2.0.

Hollywood Alley is a family-owned restaurant in Mesa, (NE corner of Baseline Road and 101)  For weeks I had noticed the signs were getting really creative –or at least intriguing. Yesterday I heard from John Wincek, who gave me the scoop about how a restaurant with “a kitschy style, and an off-kilter outlook on life-but other than that, we’re actually totally and completely normal!” created its own brand personality. He doesn’t use ad jargon like that, but that’s just what it is: DIY branding. No agency required.

The restaurant’s sign connects with customers, flagging them down, getting them to even come up with ideas for the outdoor signature. “We were suggesting food, but without screaming it at them. better yet, we were connecting through a common interest,” said John. It was not just a sign, but a game, something that made people think about the  movie, the pun, and keep the restaurant in their minds.

But the sign can only get people in. The people and the product had better deliver. It is working. Check his story. It’s a great example of how to be creative to keep business humming in spite of the recession.


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