Hooters undergoing makeover to attract women
Restaurant chain revamping image to appeal to broader audience
Hooters restaurants, long recognized for their male-driven themes, hot wings and attractive servers, are looking to revamp their image and lure in more women as loyal diners.
According Time magazine, the international restaurant chain is in the midst of a three- to five-year revitalization plan aimed at shedding its male-driven brand in favor of an atmosphere that appeals to a larger segment of customers -- especially young and female.
Time reported that Hooters has begun revitalizing its menu offerings beyond pub fare to include more salads, burgers and an "expanded line" of chicken wings, and has plans to remodel its 365 restaurants to a more contemporary look, starting with about 25 locations a year.
The first generation of Hooters' new restaurant experiment opened in Atlanta -- the hometown of Hooters headquarters -- in February. According to the company, the location is serving as a test store for new menu items and product development.
"Historically the lion's share [of the brand's] position was all about the girls," Hooters CMO Dave Henninger told Advertising Age. "It's worked relatively well, but we see ourselves in a bigger place than that."
However, Henninger said the girls and their orange shorts aren't going anywhere.
"We are the major player and we have a unique brand of hospitality. We're the iconic brand," he told the magazine.
He added that Hooters is more focused on competing with dining chains such as Buffalo Wild Wings and Chili's, and has even changed its decades-old tagline "Delightfully tacky yet unrefined" to "Feed the dream," as an effort to reflect its new vision.
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