National Restaurant Association (Washington, DC)
July 2011-February 2012
A recent National Restaurant Association campaign is focused on promoting healthy living, specifically with children.
Never before having undertaken a consumer-facing initiative, the association's three-person PR team created Kids LiveWell to help member restaurants promote the healthy choices their menus offer children.
The organization worked with online search resource Healthy Dining Finder's team of registered dietitians using 2010 USDA Dietary Guidelines to validate menu choices and cross promote the program through HealthyDiningFinder.com.
In February 2011, the group's director of nutrition and healthy living Joy Dubost, PhD, RD, held a Twitter chat. It also created a campaign Facebook page and Twitter handle, along with an "Ask the Nutritionist" video and news blog series.
The association held a press conference in Washington, DC, in July, where 12 of the initial 19 participating restaurants, including Burger King, Corner Bakery, and Outback, provided samplings of their healthy menu options for children.
"We had cameras from all major networks," says Sue Hensley, SVP of public affairs communications for the organization. "The coverage we were able to generate speaks to the value of this program."
A live webcast was offered for off-site media. The group's CEO Dawn Sweeney and Dubost took part in an SMT and RMT that morning.
Between July and November 2011, Kids LiveWell achieved 190 million media impressions, including the AP, Good Morning America, the Los Angeles Times, Reuters, Fox News, and CNN.
The Twitter party resulted in #KidsLiveWell trending worldwide, while followers of the @KidsLiveWell account rose 82%. The program currently has 80-plus member restaurants.
The group continues to add participating restaurants.