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Tropical Smoothie Cafe

Record-Breaking Growth for Leading Fast-Casual Smoothie & Food Franchise


Tropical Smoothie Cafe began as a single location on a beach in Destin, Florida. It’s grown to become one of the fastest growing national fast-casual cafe concepts. Known for their better-for-you smoothies and food with a tropical twist, they have over 830 locations in the U.S. and are growing every day.


Tropical Smoothie Cafe

Client Since



Marketing & Media Plans, Digital Advertising, Social Media Advertising, Conversion Rate Optimization, Audience Insights, Web Design & Development

See how we’re fueling healthy growth for Tropical Smoothie Cafe

With Hot Dish’s help, we signed 213 NEW agreements in 2019, 59% of which were multi-unit deals.

Cheryl Fletcher

CSVP Franchise Development,

Tropical Smoothie Cafe

Tropical Smoothie Cafe website

The Challenge:

Tropical Smoothie Cafe was ready to grow fast. But they needed the right plan to hit their aggressive franchise development goals. The marketing efforts they were doing on their own weren’t bringing a viable ROI. That’s where our expertise came in.

The Strategy:

In true Hot Dish style, we developed a three-step plan for strategic, effective growth.

Step one: identified a health-minded target audience niche, beyond the typical demographic and financial requirements.

Step two: developed an omni-channel marketing and media plan. This built awareness for the franchise opportunity and drove conversions with social, digital, trade-specific tactics and local market events.

Step three: created a responsive website to capitalize on the growing mobile traffic. Constant A/B tested site content and navigation improved the user experience and boosted conversions.

Whew, that was a mouthful. But, it worked and still is working at a record-breaking pace. Have a look.

Tropical Smoothie Cafe 8-page brochure cover
Tropical Smoothie Cafe 8-page brochure interior

8-Page Brochure

Tropical Smoothie Cafe full page magazine ad

Full Page Magazine Ad


And, now for some irresistible results. Annual franchise awards grew from 41 in 2012 to an impressive 213 in 2019.

Ongoing optimizations to their website, messaging strategy and the media campaign have improved the average cost-per-lead to $98 in 2019 and resulted in an average cost-per-sale of $3,590.

Tropical Smoothie Cafe animated display ad

Animated Display Ad

Tropical Smoothie Cafe social ads

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