MARKETS: Greensboro NC, Battleground NC, High Point NC, Clemons NC, Burlington NC, and Winston-Salem


Applebee’s faced the challenge of increasing lunchtime traffic and sales in a highly competitive market. Unlike the dinner crowd that puts more thought into choosing a place to eat, the lunchtime audience tends to be spontaneous and focused solely on where to have lunch. This made it challenging for traditional ad messages to capture their attention, making them unaware of special offers.


  1. Increase lunchtime traffic and sales.

  2. Generate attention to Applebee’s lunchtime specials in a saturated market.

  3. Engage potential customers at the moment they are deciding where to eat.

  4. Influence them that Applebee’s offers the best lunchtime value.

  5. Train brand ambassadors for effective guerrilla marketing.


Ayden Activation Group developed a creative solution to engage potential customers using brand ambassadors wearing impossible-to-ignore “Thought Bubbles” atop their heads. The thought bubbles displayed Applebee’s lunchtime offers in a clear and succinct manner, making them easy to read for both pedestrians and drivers. The brand ambassadors were enthusiastic, engaging, and genuinely liked working with the public.

To ensure success in Greensboro NC, Battleground NC, High Point NC, Clemons NC, Burlington NC, and Winston-Salem, Ayden Activation Group conducted extensive research. The team trained 14 brand ambassadors and 2 team leads, handpicking individuals for their exceptional people skills and friendly personalities. The brand ambassadors wore eye-catching thought bubbles and branded shirts, ensuring they stood out and captured attention, drawing focus to the promotion.


The guerrilla marketing campaign proved highly successful in increasing lunchtime traffic and sales for Applebee’s. The brand ambassadors distributed 15,000 coupons over the five-week period in the targeted markets, resulting in a significant number of interactions with potential customers. The response time was immediate, and many customers stated that the on-the-spot coupons were a deciding factor in choosing Applebee’s for lunch. The campaign also generated awareness and positive feedback from countless pedestrians and drivers, solidifying Applebee’s as a top-of-mind choice for lunchtime dining.


Ayden Activation Group’s strategic use of street teams and guerrilla marketing effectively addressed the challenges faced by Applebee’s in a competitive market. By engaging potential customers at the moment of decision-making, Applebee’s experienced increased foot traffic and sales during the promotional period. The success of this campaign showcases the power of street-level interactions and guerrilla marketing in driving customer engagement and brand loyalty.