Category: Report Announcements


Domino’s is very well situated as the largest US pizza chain (#1 delivery & #2 carryout sales dollars) with a 38% domestic share among the top 4 players. Its brand positioning emphasizes leading-edge, digital ordering convenience/speed and seamless payments as opposed to “flavor-of-the-month” LTOs. The brand’s reputation as a delivery leader is reinforced by efforts to promote tech solutions to speed/improve delivery (like GPS tracking, expansion of its AnyWare order platforms & automated delivery cars).

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Wendy’s believes that “people deserve better than what they’ve been getting” and its brand objective is to provide: relevant restaurants; food that is fresh, made with honest ingredients & craveable taste; service that is friendly, accurate & fast; and value based upon a competitive price & Wendy’s quality. “Quality is our Recipe” brand positioning is based upon the use of distinctive square burger patties made with 1/4 pound of fresh, never frozen 100% pure North American beef that is seasoned on the grill and served hot & juicy with freshly prepared toppings.

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McDonald’s is gaining traction with an extremely ambitious modernization program with many moving parts that include efforts to: retain existing customers by bolstering core strength in family occasions & food-led breakfast; regain lost customers by improving food taste, quality, convenience & value; and convert casual customers to committed by elevating & leveraging the McCafé platform (snacking daypart) while also improving its food health profile. The brand seeks to attract a new, hipper, technophile customer who can afford higher prices.

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IHOP is well established as the largest player in the $1B+ family chain segment with 28% market share and the largest marketing budget. The brand’s breakfast heritage leadership positioning is centered around pancakes (complimented by its never empty coffee pot & flavored syrups), a fun/likeable experience and engaging servers who provide a warm & welcoming environment. While “this is not your grandmother’s IHOP” with a younger demo vs. segment peers, value-oriented guests still represent 40% of the total which reflects IHOP’s “middle America” positioning.

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Jimmy John’s

Jimmy John’s ongoing brand refresh is moving it away from a singular focus on the pursuit of simplicity (around its core speed, freshness & food quality attributes) towards: menu innovation; new tech to enhance the guest experience; and a marketing revamp which seeks to better leverage its “Freaky Fresh! Freaky Fast!” message.

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Jack in the Box

While Jack in the Box is a regional system with ~70% of its stores located in California & Texas, the brand enjoys leading QSR hamburger share in 8 of its major markets. The chain’s menu is known for variety and innovation with 4 strong dayparts, including late-night which benefits from 24/7 drive-thru access. The primary idea is that Jack’s menu addresses various cravings throughout the day, including munchies at night.

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Chili’s is the 4th largest casual player by domestic sales (behind Olive Garden, Applebee’s & Buffalo Wild Wings) and is positioned as a great place to hang-out with family & friends by offering good value, bold food innovation, and a great bar atmosphere to go with a convenient off-premise digital order platform. This overlays Chili’s historical core brand equity as a sit-down Southwest (Tex-Mex) chain that specializes in burgers, ribs, sizzling fajitas & margaritas.

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