FIGISM #14: The Power of Mac and Cheese

On November 15, FIG was on site as longtime client Whole Foods Market Rocky Mountain Region opened its new Denver store at Union Station to packed (and delighted) crowds. In the months leading up to opening day, FIG managed media relations for the store opening, securing nearly 100 local and national print, online and broadcast media placements for the new store and a reach of over 337 million potential impressions. The team leveraged key regional media relationships and provided thoughtful, relevant and timely story angles surrounding the new store, but it was one rather…unexpected store feature that really caught everyone’s attention – the mac and cheese bar.

Denver Post food reporter Allyson Reedy highlighted the store’s new concept – a gourmet, chef-driven grab and go mac and cheese bar – in her Oct. 18 article; and then we watched “The Power of Mac and Cheese” in action, as the story was shared virally across social media and reprinted in national outlets from Food & Wine and Refinery29 to and FOX News. As the story grew, so did the length of the mac and cheese bar, along with its variety of chef-inspired recipes and build-your-own toppings. Whether it’s the appeal of good ol’ fashioned comfort food or the elevated lobster- or premium bacon-topped versions of this classic, we’re not quite sure. But we do know one thing (take it from the FIG team who was there on opening day to watch the mac and cheese bar line wrap around the entire prepared foods department at lunchtime): The power of mac and cheese is REAL… and it doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon.

By Emily Smith