Bevier Caf‚ cooks up ad campaign

Online Poster

Online Poster

By Kalyn Cooper

The Bevier Caf‚ launched a series of radio advertisements Monday as part of its efforts to attract student customers, as well as faculty and staff.

The caf‚, located on the second floor of Bevier Hall, on the corner of Goodwin Avenue and Gregory Street, is run and operated by students in the Food Science and Human Nutrition 340 classes. This class, open to students studying dietetics or restaurant hospitality, also began to focus on marketing techniques that can be used to attract students to its unique atmosphere.

Jill North, caf‚ director and visiting teaching associate in food science and human nutrition, said the new radio advertisements are part of the students’ attempt to increase awareness of the caf‚.

“Many students don’t realize it’s here, or don’t think it’s open to them,” North said. “Staff and faculty are often the only ones who use the caf‚ at all.”

Jennifer Paul, senior in ACES, is among the students enrolled in the class this semester. Paul said the students in FSHN 340 this semester have been brainstorming ways to attract new customers to Bevier for lunch.

“We’re running ads on the radio and in the (Champaign) News-Gazette to inform students that this is available to them,” Paul said. “We want to hand out fliers on the Quad, too, and try and spread the word in the rest of our classes.”

The students working at Bevier Caf‚ are the best marketing tools available and they bring fresh ideas and creativity to the process that a marketing team could not, North said.

“We turn the responsibility over to them, and they take ownership of it,” she said. “They bring new ideas every semester, so we never run out of fresh minds.”

While the majority of people eating in the caf‚ are staff, the students that frequent Bevier Caf‚ are loyal and appreciative, said Jacob Lawhead, senior in LAS. He said he first found out about Bevier Caf‚ when he was in the building for a class and just happened to see a sign in the window.

“The service and food are great, but it’s almost all staff that eats there,” Lawhead said. “Sometimes I eat with other students, but I’m usually with a professor or by myself.”

Another way the Bevier Caf‚ plans to increase student customers is by catering to student needs, such as offering many items the dorms and restaurants do not, Paul said. It promotes soy products, offers daily vegetarian specials and hands out healthier portions.

“I eat there almost every day,” Lawhead said. “The food is healthier than anything in my apartment or a fast-food restaurant.”

With everything Bevier Caf‚ has to offer University students, North said she hopes many people will pay attention to the advertisements and come in for Bevier’s hot, homemade food served in an inviting atmosphere.

“People may come in to see changes we’ve made recently or check out what we have to offer,” North said. “Hopefully, the ads will let people know we’re here and bring Bevier to the front of students’ memories.”