Café Rouge bids to assert French links

Café Rouge is to reinforce its French heritage with a series of events that will target the regional media.

PR activity developed by Westbury Communications centres on events with a French association, such as National Kissing Day on 6 July, to attract the attention of food and lifestyle writers.

The campaign will, however, steer clear of Bastille Day.

‘Journalists have never been that keen on countries’ national days. You need to be a bit more imaginative than that,’ said Westbury managing director Sue Harris. ‘We have three or four additional promotions like this throughout the year.’

The campaign will target regional media because Café Rouge’s 77 restaurants tend to be located in the centre of major towns and cities.

Harris said communities have strong ties to regional newspapers such as the Yorkshire Post. She added that they often feature significant food and wine pages, where Café Rouge plans to publicise its French food

initiatives.

French-flavoured additions to the chain’s menu, such as citron presse, and its separate wine list of regional French wines, will be pushed in food and lifestyle pages and magazines, highlighting Café Rouge’s connection to French cuisine.

Tragus Holdings purchased the Café Rouge chain in May 2002 and has undertaken a programme of refurbishment, returning outlets to their original French theme, which had been eroded after it was bought by Whitbread in 1996, said Harris.

Westbury was appointed in February for a project around National Escargot Day on 24 May, but since June has been retained as Tragus’s first consumer PR agency for Café Rouge.

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