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3. Red Lobster
Weekly percent change: +16.8%
Index score: 50.57

Casual-dining brand Red Lobster brought about a double-digit gain on an already high Social 200 index score on the strength of its food shots that promote its popular Endless Shrimp promotion. During the third week of September, Red Lobster scored three Facebook pictures that earned more than 20,000 likes each, including a photo of its Shrimp Linguini Alfredo that garnered more than 113,750 likes, more than 5,100 shares and more than 1,900 comments. Pictures of the Lobster and Shrimp Quesadilla and the Lobster Grilled Cheese got about 22,000 likes each, as well. Red Lobster matches its tweets to reflect its Facebook content, and Twitter followers favorited and retweeted the food shots several hundred times.

4. Bob Evans
Weekly percent change: +16.7%
Index score: 15.92

Recently, Bob Evans has been celebrating the 60th anniversary of its sausages being sold in grocery stores and other retail settings, and the Facebook posts highlighting that milestone had performed well compared with the family-dining chain’s typical social content. However, a related post that also touted a 60th anniversary giveaway — including a grand prize of a $1,000 gift card — received the most attention, including nearly 2,000 likes and nearly 200 shares. Bob Evans also derives 32 percent of its Social 200 index score from the YouTube component, and during the third week in September, the chain posted two videos that explained its “BE Kind” philosophy of community fundraising and cause marketing.

5. Culver’s
Weekly percent change: +16.5%
Index score: 22.37

Quick-service chain Culver’s brought about a double-digit weekly gain in its Social 200 score with a Facebook campaign centered around its Crispy or Grilled Chicken Sandwiches, as well as a few unrelated posts that Culver’s interspersed successfully. In the “Crispy or Grilled” poll contest, fans were asked to vote for their preferred chicken sandwich via a special link, and they received a coupon for voting as well as a chance for the grand prize, a $250 Culver’s gift card. Whenever restaurant brands ask for this kind of voting, it usually makes for a lively comments section and encourages Facebook sharing, as Culver’s proved again the third week of September. The brand also received more than a thousand likes for other random posts, such as the announcement that it will open soon in Naples, Fla., and a professional food shot of its ButterBurger.

Contact Mark Brandau at mark.brandau@penton.com.
Follow him on Twitter: @Mark_from_NRN