Toronto noodle shop cooks up international award

The opportunity

As a young enterprise with corporate responsibility woven into its heart, Sweet Lulu needed to find a natural way to communicate its values and practices to current and potential customers.

Pearl Consulting developed a strategy to promote the restaurant’s Corporate Responsibility (CR) work not just locally, but internationally with impressive results.

The solution

Pearl Consulting felt Sweet Lulu founder Serge Vitale was a worthy recipient of the ‘Outstanding Young Person’s Award’, given annually by the Junior Chamber International of Osaka to young people who have made significant contributions to their communities.

In the submission, Pearl Consulting highlighted Serge’s commitment to a healthy and environmentally-friendly approach to cooking, sourcing and waste; his involvement in the community; and his HR policies that put ‘fairness first’ from diversity to promoting from within.

Steps to success

1. Develop innovative ideas with impact

Although Sweet Lulu was looking for a conventional media campaign to build awareness, Pearl Consulting came up with an idea that was innovative and impactful, and helped generate an international reputation for the restaurant.

2. Develop a strategy and see it through to completion

Pearl Consulting not only developed the idea for the award submission, but also managed the whole process. With its strong CR programs in place aligned with good business practice and core values, Pearl Consulting was able to create a powerful proposal on behalf of Sweet Lulu – and triumph.

3. Design, implement and manage PR campaign

When Serge was named one of the ‘Outstanding Young Persons’ of the year for his work in Corporate Social Responsibility, he was invited to Japan to receive his award and enjoy a private audience with Crown Prince Naruhito of Japan. Pearl Consulting’s PR campaign in Canada and internationally ensured maximum media coverage for Serge and Sweet Lulu.

The outcome

For a small restaurant owner to win such a prestigious international award was major news. With the help of Pearl Consulting, Sweet Lulu garnered media coverage in both Japan and Canada including a TV segment by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.

Sweet Lulu saw a spike in business of up to 10% in the months following the award. In the long term, it boosted confidence and belief in the sustainable business benefits of a commitment to CR. For Sweet Lulu’s customers, the win had a positive effect on loyalty, goodwill and a feeling of national pride.

Pearl Consulting developed a communications strategy to promote our corporate responsibility work, resulting in an international CSR award. They followed this up with media engagement, landing top stories on both mainstream radio and television. We were very happy with their consulting service both in terms of strategy and delivery.” Serge Vitale, Owner, Sweet Lulu Restaurants