It’s generally agreed that word of mouth is the best advertising there is. But word of mouth isn’t the same as it used to be—the words are often tapped out on a keyboard, and the mouth is often a social media site.
Jared Fenix, general manager of Lucky Break Billiards, Bar & Grill, doesn’t think he employs social media excessively, by today’s standards, to market the sports bar on Baseline in Tempe.
“But it’s a sign of the times,” says Fenix. Therefore, indeed, a whole Lucky Break community can be found online, on Facebook and Twitter, as well as on the place’s own website (luckybreakaz.com).
Since I have less computer savvy than an untrained gibbon, Fenix and I mostly confine our conversation to Facebook, the one social media site that I can use a little. “It’s the most popular,” he observes. “People just like going on there.”
If they do, they can find a lively page devoted to Lucky Break. The key, says Fenix, is to use the page not only to plug special events, like bracket challenges or NFL draft parties, or menu items at the place itself, but to promote general interest and interaction, especially regarding the sporting events that patrons come in to watch.
“Like the night the Coyotes played their last game, we posted (on our site), thanking them for a great season, stuff like that,” Fenix says. “We try to stay in the know with what’s going on around town. We post little polling questions, yes or no, for or against, on little topics. The idea is, if they’re a friend of our page, their friends see us, and it helps drive traffic to us.”
None of which means, of course, that Lucky Break has abandoned conventional advertising. “You can’t do one without the other,” says Fenix, who advertises the bar and its events on Xtra Sports Talk Radio and in neighborhood print media.
“Radio was very successful for us during March Madness, and spring training. We do the Wrangler News and Lakes Log, and also the New Times.”
All of this has been a factor in getting new customers through doors at Lucky Break, which opened at the beginning of the year. But it’s the lively, friendly atmosphere—and the food—that’s kept customers coming back.
Initially focused on large gourmet burgers, the place now offers selections beyond pub grub:
“We just revamped the menu,” says Fenix—“added some entrees, such as fish n’ chips and pasta primavera. It’s added a lot of balance to the menu.”
His own favorites?
“I have three. First, the boneless wings. We make ‘em from scratch, and the chicken’s amazing. Second, the Monte Twisto.” As the name implies, this is a twist on the Monte Cristo.
“Instead of being deep fried it’s just the french toast. It’s more like a regular sandwich. We have a group that comes in on Wednesdays from Southwest Airlines that probably eat three or four of them.”
Fenix’s third favorite is the peppercorn burger—black pepper, mushrooms, bacon, monterrey jack cheese and onion sauce.
Sounds tasty, at that. But you’ll have to come into Lucky Break to find out. Some things you still can’t do online.