I recently received a coupon for a free Chipotle burrito—along with an offer for free chips and guacamole.
A year ago, an offer like this would have sent my wife and I scurrying to the car to cash in immediately. How times have changed.
Chipotle has gone to great lengths to ensure that its food is safe. Once mind-bogglingly impressive stock prices have plummeted, and it needs a way to
entice people to try it again.
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The chain reported a 36 percent year-over-year sales drop in January, and a 26 percent drop in February. Chipotle also said it expects to report at least a
$1-per-share loss for 2016’s first financial quarter.
Will the 21 million coupons it is sending win back favor among fans? Chipotle’s CFO, Jack Hartung, says the coupons have been successful so far.
"Free burritos — turns out it works," Hartung told Business Insider. "It brings people into
Roughly 5.3 million people downloaded Chipotle’s free-burrito offer in February, and just under half—roughly 2.5 million consumers—redeemed the offer in
"We fully expected that [offer] to go viral," Chipotle’s CCO, Mark Crumpacker, said at the Bank of America Merrill Lynch Consumer and Retail Tech Conference.
"That was our first test to see how much people really wanted to come back to Chipotle."
The restaurant chain said it might try more local promotions this summer, including “buy one, get one free” offers.