Primanti Bros. Maximizes Their Return on Ad Spend with Adentro

Primanti Bros. Restaurant and Bar is a Pittsburgh-based sandwich shop that started in 1933 and has now grown to 37 locations nationwide. Known for their fresh, house-made sandwiches, this chain strives to satisfy guests both in-person and through online ordering.

Primanti Bros. Maximizes Their Return on Ad Spend

The Challenge

The marketing team at Primanti Bros. was on the hunt for effective solutions to solve two of their ongoing challenges: building their first-party customer database and campaign measurement. 

As a fast-growing restaurant chain, it’s no surprise that their first concern was contact collection. They needed a platform that could easily capture email addresses and help them convert guests to their loyalty program. 

Their larger problem, however, was their lack of visibility into campaign effectiveness. While Primanti Bros. understood that investing in paid marketing would attract new customers, they had no idea how many people their campaigns were actually reaching or how to determine their effectiveness.

The Solution

Understanding that consumers are generally willing to provide their email address to gain access to free WiFi, Primanti Bros. implemented Adentro’s custom WiFi portal to capture in-store guest information. However, they were also surprised to discover how the connection between their WiFi and the Adentro marketing platform could also solve their measurement challenge.

“We wanted to use Adentro’s tools to capture email addresses when people signed onto our WiFi and then reach out to try to convert them to our loyalty program,” says Ryan Wilkinson, Director of Marketing at Primanti Bros. “Then we learned Adentro also has a solution for paid media that uses the same technology to track customers as they come into the restaurant—even if they don’t sign on to the WiFi.” 

Using Adentro, Primanti Bros. can track walk-throughs of guests who come into the restaurant after being served an email or online ad—and that’s not just customers who use the WiFi, but anyone who stays on-site for a specified amount of time. In this way, Adentro can tell who is simply walking past the restaurant, who is actually a customer, and whether or not they were exposed to an advertising campaign. 

“It grew from collecting email addresses to giving us unbelievable insight into the effectiveness of walk-throughs,” Wilkinson says. “I didn’t even think about WiFi marketing the way Adentro thought of it—it’s way bigger and more important than I thought.”

“We’ve used modeling and geofencing before, but with Adentro, we know the exact number of people who see our ads and then come into the restaurant—this gives us a ton of visibility into the effectiveness of our campaigns. While we do a fair amount of takeout and curbside, our bread and butter is still in-room dining. The ability to optimize media for physical walk-throughs is critical.”

Ryan Wilkinson, Director of Marketing at Primanti Bros.

The Results

Since getting started with Adentro a year ago, Primanti Bros. has seen significant return on investment with both collection rates and paid campaigns. Contact collection rates soared, amassing more than 67,000 new customer emails in 2021. They also used their newfound customer knowledge to tailor marketing messages and achieved a $4 cost per walkthrough on their paid social campaigns. Additionally, Primanti Bros. most recent ad campaign saw an impressive $7:1 return on ad spend. 

“It’s critical to have customers walking into the restaurant, and understanding how to do that helps us optimize media buys,” Wilkinson says. “Since partnering with Adentro, we’ve been able to more clearly measure the ROI of our media and see the effect on sales and foot traffic in our restaurants. It’s completely changed how we look at our marketing.”