*Chevalo & Monique Wilsondebriano, owners of Charleston Gourmet Burger Company (www.charlestongourmetburger.
“This is unbelievable to us,” states Chevalo, as he thinks back to how their business started. “It seems like only yesterday we came up with our burger marinade recipe at a cookout at our Charleston home.” His wife Monique comments on how far they’ve come: “Showcasing our products on QVC is a dream come true; We are still pinching ourselves”.
The frozen microwavable cheeseburgers debuting on QVC will be marinated with their unconventional mix of nine herbs & spices they call their “Gourmet Marinade.”
Besides the QVC opportunity, the couple recently penned a deal to be distributed to over 700 Kroger stores around the country, and the number of Lowe’s Home Improvement stores carrying their products was increased from 548 to over 900 stores nationwide.
The couple’s Charleston Gourmet Burger Company was one of only 11 companies chosen to be on Facebook’s Small Business Council (www.facebook.com/business/e/
For more details about their QVC launch, visit www.charlestoncitypaper.com/
Charleston Gourmet Burger Company, founded by Chevalo and Monique Wilsondebriano, started at a backyard BBQ in 2012. Chevalo, a decorated NYC first responder, and Monique, a retail professional, moved to Charleston seeking a change after the heartbreak of the 9/11 attacks. Not knowing anyone in Charleston, Monique and Chevalo decided to throw a neighborhood BBQ, using their homemade burger marinade. When they saw how much people loved their marinade, Charleston Gourmet Burger Company was born.
One of the first things they did to get started was establish their Facebook Page. As a small business with limited resources, they knew Facebook could help them get the word out about their product in an affordable way. After successfully getting their product in a few big box retailers, they began using Facebook advertising and targeting tools to build brand recognition and drive traffic to the retailers carrying their products.
If a particular market is underperforming, they will invest a small amount in Facebook ads to increase sales. For customers who can’t access their products in stores, Monique and Chevalo use Facebook Shops to sell their marinades directly.
Facebook started as a brand awareness tool, but transitioned into a key part of their marketing strategy and a way for Monique and Chevalo to authentically connect with their customers. And it’s working – in just 5 years, Charleston Gourmet Burger Company has grown from a backyard BBQ recipe, to an international business sold across all 50 states in the U.S. and 17 countries worldwide. In the future, Monique and Chevalo hope to open a Charleston Gourmet Burger Company manufacturing facility where they can invite aspiring entrepreneurs to discover the potential in pursuing a passion.
Chevalo or Monique Wilsondebriano