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Popeyes scores with sports fans on mobile in $25,000 contest

In the Sprite Popeyes Ultimate Sports Fan Experience, customers who buy a 32 ounce or 44 ounce Coca-Cola beverage at a participating Popeyes find a code on the cup then visit for a chance to win. The program is an example of how the natural relationship between the immediacy of mobile and the dynamic nature of live sporting events can be leveraged to drive a connection with highly engaged sports fans.

“We lead with a mobile-first strategy because we know that our consumers, both QSR and specifically Popeyes guests, are people on the go,” said Chad Crawford, director of marketing impact, for Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, Atlanta.

“As with most people these days, our guests are connected to their world through their device, so we want to provide a fun, interactive experience for guests through the same channels and platforms they use to interact with the world and their peers.

“From the dedicated URL to the dedicated microsite, the experience has been designed for this use, with few steps, simple portals and inputs that are fun and engaging but not laborious,” he said. “Perfect for the mobile user.”

Open promotion
First, the user goes to from their device and registers with a code received on a Popeyes cup.

Then, the user is invited to play a word game. Users can play once per day.

Serving up a tantalizing sports fan’s dream.

Popeyes’ campaign continues an effort to leverage mobile and games to drive consumer engagement.

It recently teamed up with food and spice brand Zatarain’s on a mobile social promotion that resulted in 11,265 sweepstakes entries and 63,570 clicks to the sweepstakes landing page.

To promote a limited-edition menu item at Popeyes called Zatarain’s Butterfly Shrimp, the two companies held a contest on Twitter designed to showcase each brand’s roots in New Orleans while leveraging the social fan base of both. Additionally, Zatarain’s kept followers engaged by creating original Vine videos.

The latest campaign’s simple design points to marketers’ growing maturity as mobile moves from a novelty or gimmick to an essential tool in the modern marketer’s playbook.

Other brands opting for a simple approach recently include Coca-Cola, which asked consumers to continue spreading optimism in the world by replying to negative Tweets on Twitter with the #MakeItHappy hashtag, prompting the brand to create cheerful online artwork out of the messages received in an attempt to boost spirits.

Pepsi leveraged an SMS-triggered sweepstakes to give fans a chance to win a trip to the 2014 Academy Awards show.

Pepsi partnered with Regal Entertainment Group on the “Sip Like a Star” campaign that plastered SMS keywords on the soda giant’s cups sold in movie theaters. It placed SMS calls-to-action on all fountain drink cups at Regal’s Hollywood Theatres locations.

Toyota unveiled a Vine campaign that showcased the artwork of children globally addressing the topic of futuristic transportation.

Mobile first
“Popeyes and sports are a great match and mobile is the perfect venue to deliver this contest to our guests,” Mr. Crawford said.

Fun and engaging, but not laborious.

“There has always been a lot of interaction between the Popeyes brand and the sports world, as evidenced by the inaugural Popeyes Bahamas Bowl which just took place this past December, leveraging that history and alignment.”  

Final Take
Michael Barris is staff reporter on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York