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Selam Ethiopian Kitchen

Client & Project

Selam Ethiopian Kitchen is a family-owned restaurant serving locally sourced, organic ingredients in Chicago.

Owner and Chef Selamawit "Selam" Abebe making injera in her kitchen at Selam Ethiopian Kitchen

After expanding from a small store to a full-blown restaurant, Selam was struggling to gain traction. People didn’t know about the new restaurant, the sales were sluggish, and it didn’t have an identity. By partnering with the family-owned business, we helped them develop a memorable brand and carry out a marketing campaign that revived its sales. We conducted a customer satisfaction survey, developed a brand strategy, built a new website, devised and executed a six-month marketing campaign, and created an engaging digital presence.

The Brand

The first order of business was to give Selam a new look — logo and brand identity.

Selam Ethiopian Kitchen's logo and tagline

The new logo represents the joy of sharing Ethiopian cuisine with friends and loved ones, a traditional way of experiencing the food. “Selam” is written in a white font, a rustic yet dapper handwritten font with a personal charm — mimicking the runny dough of injera, the world-famous staple of Ethiopia — on a red platter, which symbolizes togetherness. The tagline “What We Share” reinforces the brand’s message — creating moments of happiness and togetherness through a delicious Ethiopian cuisine made from 100% organic, local ingredients.

Website

Based on the brand narrative, we developed a new responsive website and created all the web content including the photographs and videos.

A screenshot of Selam Ethiopian Kitchen's website

Search engine optimized, the new website tells the story of Selam Ethiopian Kitchen, the owners, and the food, conveying a cohesive brand narrative. It contains powerful imageries to work up an impulsive appetite. Customers can make reservations and order delivery online, see upcoming events as well as deals, and read insider stories through the blog.

Marketieng Campaign

Through a digital-first marketing campaign, we were able to raise brand awareness and boost Selam's sales.

The six-month marketing campaign conveyed Selam’s brand narrative across the Chicagoland. Paid digital ads containing vibrant imageries and videos targeted its key audience. This promotion was supported by organic social media marketing.

Media Placement

By working with prominent local media, we put Selam on the map.

Selam Ethiopian Kitchen on the Chicago Reader

“Selam’s signature dishes, along with the rest of the menu, provide an opportunity for the best kind of eating.”

— Chicago Reader

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Selam Ethiopian Kitchen on Voyage Chicago

“We make Ethiopian food using locally sourced, organic ingredients. We are people’s healthy choice of Ethiopian cuisine. Our meat dishes are the most popular because that’s what we used to specialize in when we had our little butcher shop.”

— Voyage Chicago

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In addition to the media placement, we formed different partnerships with local organizations to create a stronger tie with various communities.

Result

Selam doubled its sales and gained fast brand awareness.

Customers eating at Selam Ethiopian Kitchen

  • 1.6 customers for every marketing dollar spent
  • 1.2M impressions and 70K engagement on social media
  • 500 user-generated content
  • 2 media placements
  • 3 partnerships with local institutions
  • Started signature annual event
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