Nate Gilbert of Deli Delicious can be seen second from the left at the Miss Vickies event in Plano, Texas on Oct. 3, 2019. (Cooper Neill)

published on November 19, 2019 - 1:57 PM
Written by Gabriel Dillard

Local sandwich franchise Deli Delicious has been awarded $10,000 for its vision and corporate mission and is a finalist for a marketing competition from PepsiCo and Miss Vickie’s chips.

Nate Gilbert, who handles franchise sales and marketing for Deli Delicious, happened upon the PartnerChip competition on social media. He said the commitment to franchisees and communities from Miss Vickie’s “really spoke to the core of Deli Delicious.”

“They’re very inclusive and about community,” Gilbert said. “They wanted to know why serving the community was important.”

PepsiCo started the started the program with Frito-Lay, the parent company of Miss Vickie’s, to connect food vendors with manufacturers to drive traffic to their businesses, according to a press release.

The contest involved writing an essay, and Gilbert said he took language for the brief right from the Deli Delicious mission statement.

Essays were judged on originality, clarity, believability and examples.

Deli Delicious was named the West Coast Finalist. Finalists then went to the Frito-Lay headquarters in Plano, Texas, where they met with representatives from manufacturers as well as representatives from Google and Facebook for a two-day summit “teaching companies to be more effective in the digital world,” Gilbert said.

There, they “heard from people at the back-end of the business, rather than a sales person,” Gilbert went on to say.

“Digital disruption is hitting the restaurant industry and we want to help our Foodservice partners find solutions,” said Gilbertson Cuffy, director of digital marketing for PepsiCo Foodservice. “If we can help our customers implement new strategies and technologies that move our products and embraces digital engagement, their sales improve and everyone wins.”

As a West Coast Finalist, Deli Delicious received $10,000 it will put toward increasing online presence and especially pushing the catering side of the business. After catering the Central Valley Women’s Conference and hearing feedback there, Gilbert said that was one area where they could push harder. Foot traffic into stores has been growing, but they want to let businesses know about catering, he added.

The winner of the PartnerChip program will win $50,000. Those prizes will be announced in the coming weeks, according to representatives from PepsiCo.

“Whether we win the grand prize or not, there has been tremendous value to hear from industry experts and put together a strategy,” Gilbert said.

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