Creatively Creating Buzz (and Increasing Sales) Through Integrated Marketing

Blimpie proved to be the real winners in the “Match and Win” game during its second annual Combo Craze as the sub-sandwich brand matched up marketing efforts to win new online and in-store traffic. The QSR brand realized system-wide sales increases of six percent in April and five percent in May due to this integrated marketing effort.

Additionally, the team at Blimpie surpassed internal goals and saw:

  • 14,953 new e-club e-mail subscribers acquired (Goal was 10,000)
  • 4,591 new Twitter followers (Goal was 3,000)
  • 1,791 new Instagram followers (Goal was 1,000)
  • 53 percent e-mail opt-in rate to Combo Craze promotions (Goal was 30-35 percent)
  • 535,602 visits to website (nearly double average traffic – 282,000)fb-2

“We brought the campaign back because it was such a success the first year and we knew it was a way to reach Generation Z and Millennials who go to QSRs at a higher rate,” Steve Evans, Blimpie’s Vice President of Marketing, told Modern Restaurant Management magazine. “Generation Z was literally born into technology and this ‘social listening’ approach is about open communication with the brand and reaching them where they are. Loyalty is very important to the brand and we are always evolving and seeking ways to drive traffic and sales as well as connect with the customers.”

Evans said the Blimpie staff analyzed results of last year’s campaign to see what worked well and what didn’t to create effective campaigns that work across the board.  

“It’s about closing the loop and having a consistency of messaging. We’re proud of Combo Craze’s success because countless quick-serve restaurant chains consistently struggle to develop even one creative campaign that ties together great in-store experiences with rewarding online customer engagements,” said Evans. “The key is developing a promotion and/or game that’s easy to access or play and then using all customer touchpoints, in-store and online, to encourage participation and engagement.”

The online “match-and-win” game offered prizes to fans who engaged with the brand in-store and online via social media and Blimpie’s e-club. Running from April 4 to June 5, the contest included a grand prize trip to New York City and a series of prizes such as free Blimpie subs for a year and cash prizes valued at $1,000 and $500.