ATLANTA – May 14, 2020 – It’s a sweet dream come true! Great American Cookies® and Marble Slab Creamery® are introducing a new cohesive brand vision and co-brand experience filled with imagination and wonder. The strategy brings the iconic concepts together in one delicious destination – a wonderland for those who crave fresh-baked cookies and homemade ice cream. The first store featuring the integrated branding is now open in Columbia, South Carolina (only curbside pick-up and delivery are currently being offered due to COVID-19). A video premiering the concept can be found here: Cone and Cookie Website.
The new Great American Cookies and Marble Slab Creamery experience was crafted with storytelling and a heighted sense of “food theater” in mind. Parent company, Global Franchise Group (GFG), partnered with nationally recognized brand consultancy and creative agency, Sterling-Rice Group (SRG) to conceptualize the vision.
“We have created a cohesive, complimentary and unbelievably unique vision for our Great American Cookies and Marble Slab Creamery co-brand locations,” said Jenn Johnston, Chief Brand Officer and President of Franchise Operations at GFG. “While incredibly popular and distinctive on their own, we know these two legacy brands are irresistible coupled together. The experience is completely integrated from the moment you step in the door, to when you take your first bite. This is monumental and game changing in our industry – we are taking co-branding to the next level.”
This is the second time GFG has worked with Sterling-Rice Group to modernize and elevate its brand portfolio. Together, they introduced a full rebranding for Round Table Pizza in 2019 centered around “Pizza Royalty.” With mantras like “Home of the Original Cookie Cake” and “Imagination Has No Limits,” the unified in-store experience encourages guests to indulge their sweet senses and to “just imagine, the sweet spot – a place where you can have it all!”
“History is full of famous duos who are better together, but there aren’t many successful co-branded concepts in the restaurant space,” said Liz Seelye, Managing Director of Brand Innovation at SRG. “Thanks to insights gleaned with guests and franchisees, we rediscovered what makes each brand unique. Then we strengthened the bond between them to create a more effective operations platform, a more compelling offering, an even more powerful brand promise.”
Nostalgic favorites are served side-by-side innovations like Create Your Own Cookie Shakes, Ice Cream Double Doozies, and Cookie and Cheesecake Brownie Sundaes. The “Unlimited Mix-Ins” Marble Slab Creamery is known for has been reimagined to “Free Mix-Ins” and the customization Great American Cookies is known for now extends to all cakes and cookies. Store signage and exciting, new products encourage sweet Instagram moments for social media engagement.
“Sweet marks the spot where imagination has no limits for the new Great American Cookies and Marble Slab Creamery identity,” said Annica Conrad, Executive Vice President of Brand Marketing for Global Franchise Group. “We have imagined a space and experience that encourages connection, celebration and permissible indulgence. Each brand’s products naturally elevate when combined creating a delicious product innovation platform to attract customers and to drive unit profitability.”
Cakes are a focal point of the concept with a prominent “Cake Walk” that highlights innovation in Cookie Cake and Ice Cream Cake design. This integrated branding also includes new logos, packaging and a modernized ethos to retain and attract Great American Cookies and Marble Slab Creamery fans and employees for years to come.
“The new design crafts an integrated, contemporary experience so both brands maintain relevance together and separately,” said Jen Jones, Managing Partner of Design at SRG. “Now guests can see how the magic happens. The new-to-world store experience highlights fresh-baked cookie and creative ice cream processes from the marble slab counter and mix-in display to the ‘imagination station’ where guests can observe the artistry of cake customization.”
The Great American Cookies and Marble Slab Creamery co-brand locations have been an incredibly successful concept. There are currently 108 co-branded locations across the country, with an additional 38 franchisees set to add-on a concept to an existing store and 33 additional stores set to open as part of Area Development Agreements. The first reimagined store is operated by longtime franchisees Lane and Ryan Griffith and Glen Lax. The store is located at Columbiana Place in Columbia South Carolina (1230 Bower Parkway, Columbia, SC 29212).
Notes to Editors:
To obtain photos of the first new Great American Cookies and Marble Slab Creamery “Sweet Spot,” please contact Kathleen Shaffer at [email protected] or 470-388-6170. Logos, packaging and product pictures are also available.
About Great American Cookies® Visit Great American Cookies
Founded in 1977 on the strength of an old family Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe, Great American Cookies has set the standard for gourmet Cookie sales in a fun, celebratory environment. For over 40 years, Great American Cookies has maintained the heritage and integrity of its products by producing proprietary Cookie dough exclusively from its plant in Atlanta. Great American Cookies is known for its signature Cookie Cakes, trademark flavors and menu of delectable products baked fresh in store. Great American Cookies currently operates in locations across the United States, as well as internationally in Bahrain, Guam, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. For more information about Great American Cookies and store locations, visit Great American Cookies follow Great American Cookies’ national Twitter handle, @Gr8AmCookies, or become a fan of the brand on Facebook.
About Marble Slab Creamery® Visit Marble Slab Creamery
Marble Slab Creamery, a leading purveyor of chef created super-premium hand-mixed ice cream and the innovator of the frozen slab technique, was founded in 1983. Every batch of Marble Slab Creamery ice cream is fresh made in small batches in store using dairy from local farms and flavor ingredients from around the world. Today, Marble Slab Creamery is enjoyed by consumers across the globe with locations in, Bahrain, Canada, Guam, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Pakistan, Bangladesh and the United States. For more information visit Marble Slab Creamery. You can also join the conversation on MSC Facebook, Twitter (@Marbleslab) or Instagram (@marbleslabcreamery).
Chief Marketing Officer
Annica has more than 20 years of award-winning marketing experience and has been with GFG for 3 years. She joined the company from Mellow Mushroom Pizza Bakers where she was Vice President, Brand Development. In this role, Annica was responsible for the rebirth and growth in popularity of the 42-year-old eclectic brand through smart menu design and development, implementation of the Mellow Mushroom loyalty app and creation and rollout of its first online ordering system. Before her time with Mellow Mushroom, Annica was Vice President of Marketing for Mcalister’s Corporation and she spent the early part of her career at a prominent advertising agency in Mobile Alabama. She is graduate of Samford University in Birmingham where she earned her Bachelors in Marketing and MBA in Economics.
Chief Financial Officer
Patterson came to Global Franchise Group in April 2020 from FOCUS Brands where he served as Senior Vice President of Accounting. For the last eleven years, he was responsible for leading financials for Cinnabon, Carvel, Schlotzsky’s, Moe’s Southwest Grill, McAlister’s Deli, Auntie Anne’s and Jamba Juice. He directed the organization through the transfer and integration of all accounting back-office functions for Auntie Anne’s from Pennsylvania, McAlister’s Deli from Mississippi, and Jamba Juice from Texas to Atlanta and converted a brand-centric accounting structure into a shared services organization. Before his time with FOCUS, he was Senior Vice President & Corporate Controller for Movie Gallery/Hollywood Video (NASDAQ: MOVI & MVGR), Vice President and Corporate Controller for Republic National Cabinet Corporation, and Corporate Controller for Wolverine Tube, Inc. (NYSE: WLV). He is a Certified Public Accountant and a Certified Management Accountant, holds a master’s in business administration from Auburn University, and is a graduate of the University of Texas, Tyler.