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Pie Face rewards selfies with free pies

Pie Face has planted a billboard in New York’s Times Square, promising free pies in exchange for selfies that display the billboard in the background.

The 50-foot sign will be on display on 48th and 7th Avenue until January 12. Consumers can take a selfie in front of the billboard, share it on social media and come in to a Pie Face store to receive a free pie.

“We wanted to cover a multitude of strategies with a limited amount of resources over the holiday period,” said Tennille Scicluna, senior marketing manager at Pie Face USA, New York. “I loved this idea because it provided us with a strategy across digital, mobile, social, above-the-line, consumer trial and call-to-action within a single mobile campaign.

“The social sharing element to this campaign has been the key to its success,” she said. “Customers bring their smartphones into stores and reveal their selfies to which they must then upload to any social media platform.

“We have enjoyed seeing the hundreds upon hundreds of people engaging with our brand in mobile photo form. We’ve had some seriously funny selfies presented already and they continue to flow in daily.”

Face off
The Australian-based pie franchise now has eight locations in New York across Midtown, Union Square, Chelsea, Hells Kitchen and Murray Hill.

Consumers can go to any of these locations to redeem their free pie. They must show a store employee the selfie in front of the Times Square billboard and prove that they shared it on social media.

The selfie must be posted with either a tag, @piefaceusa, or hashtag, #pieface.

Consumers can redeem a free mini savory pie every day until the billboard is removed on January 12.

According to Ms. Scicluna, Pie Face New York is seeing a minimum of 100 new customers a day entering its stores.

In addition to the increase in store traffic, the campaign also helps Pie Face build its presence across social media. While the pie chain is huge in Australia, it is less known in the United States, and campaigns like these can help make the name more recognizable among consumers.

Mobile pies
Pie Face has been creatively incorporating mobile and social into its marketing efforts ever since it arrived in New York.

In August, Pie Face launched a monthly ‘Pay with a Tweet’ campaign that lets consumers trade social media currency for a mini pie on every first Tuesday of the month. After just two months of the campaign, Pie Face garnered 700 tweets, 300 Facebook posts and 200 Instagram posts (see story).

Pie Face is not the only brand to realize the potential of social and mobile.

A number of retailers have caught on to the selfie trend in particular to increase consumer engagement. Ted Baker and AT&T are two such marketers (see story).

“Being located in Manhattan we know that our customers spend a significantly higher amount of time on their mobile devices than any other digital platform,” Ms. Scicluna said. “This is so powerful and a key driver to all of our marketing activities.”

Final Take
Rebecca Borison is editorial assistant on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York