Steak Escape uses Duluth ad agency’s ideas

Next time you’re at a Steak Escape restaurant, look around.

You’ll see the work of Out There Advertising of Duluth. See those menu boards hanging overhead at the restaurant counter?

The folks at Out There — who have worked with the restaurant chain since 2001 — knew your eyes would first look to the center, then to the top left and then jump to the bottom right, before scanning the menu in between.

That’s why they redesigned the menu boards for Steak Escape’s 100-plus quick service restaurants across the country. That includes the one at Miller Hill Mall which was one of the Steak Escapes to test the board months ago.

Call it marketing, call it using psychology, call it just good advertising. But because of Out There, the boards now feature large photos the chain’s most popular foods, including its big seller, the Cheesesteak. The most frequently-ordered sandwiches — the Grand Escape and Wild West BBQ — are listed first, in the the top left corner, while the the most popular ad-ons are listed in the lower right corner.

“We eat with our eyes, and this new design makes it easier for customers to find the food they’re looking to order,” said John Keuning, the agency’s creative director.

The agency also created a nationwide contest for Steak Escape. In “6 Degrees of Grill,” customers get scratch card game pieces that direct customers to the Steak Escape website where they can share their favorite grilling photo online for a chance to win a backyard grill.

Out There Advertising designed all the materials for the contest, including posters, scratch cards, e-newsletters and social media components. The idea is to get customers to continue to interact with Steak Escape after their food purchase.

Steak Escape also has restaurants in Cloquet and Hibbing.