Hooters Working To Insert The Restaurant Into Its “Breastaurant” Brand

In the ad business we hear about brands wishing to reinvent themselves daily. In fact, many of us have heard these exact words (more than once), “We want to be just like Apple.” Thankfully, there are few signs of brand-specific cluelessness this overt.

Like agencies seeking a new skin, I am not convinced a full scale brand reinvention is possible, but evolution and new growth certainly is. According to USA TODAY, Hooters, “the chain that invented the $2 billion ‘breastaurant’ category is desperate to re-create itself as something other than a fading relic of the 1980s.”

Hooters is busy redesigning its restaurant interiors, its iconic servers’ uniforms and its menu. No more frozen chicken wings and burgers. The new menu is all fresh. And, for the first time in Hooters history, Hooters is serving entrée salads.

Will it be enough to reverse the slide? USA TODAY reports that the ‘breastaurant’ category is growing at a double-digit rate, while Hooters’ sales have mostly fallen for five of the past six years. During that time, it closed about 50 restaurants while competitors, such as Twin Peaks and Tilted Kilt, were opening stores at a furious pace.



About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.