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Baskin-Robbins ices up Father’s Day sales with mobile-optimized ordering site

Baskin-Robbins is aiming to add garnish to its mobile strategy and drive up sales ahead of Father’s Day by offering consumers the ability to place orders for customized cakes and treats via its online ordering Web site, while sister brand Dunkin’ Donuts continues to leverage mobile instant-win games to drum up excitement for new products.

Consumers can view Baskin-Robbins’ inventory on their mobile devices by visiting, and may customize selected products by flavor, color and message when available. As customers become increasingly more time-strapped, the ability to place personalized cake orders on mobile prior to holidays will likely resonate with consumers who wait until last minute to purchase treats.

“It was important for us to offer a mobile-optimized online cake ordering experience for our guests, given that many of them are ordering cakes using their mobile devices,” said Lindsay Cronin, public relations manager at Dunkin’ Brands Inc., Canton, MA. “We want to make it easy for guests to customize and order our ice cream cakes, whether they’re visiting us on their laptop, smartphone or tablet.

“Online cake ordering has helped drive our cake category growth since its launch in April 2014.”

Mobile customization
Once consumers visit the designated Baskin-Robbins ordering site on their mobile devices or computers, they will be prompted to input their zip code or city and state to find the nearest bricks-and-mortar location, where cakes may be picked up as soon as 24 hours after placing an order.

After a location has been chosen, guests may choose from a slew of categories, including classic cakes, treats, pies, and Dunkin’ Donuts coffee. Users may click on the category to view the list of customizable items and indicate the quantity, size, ice cream flavor, special message and special message color of their liking.

There is also a box for special instructions, should guests have food allergies or additional requests for the Baskin-Robbins staff.

Customers are asked to specify the exact date and time at which they would like to pick up their order before continuing to the mobile-optimized checkout.

Baskin-Robbins will likely be able to steal other ice cream competitors’ thunder with this feature, as it proves useful for those shopping for last-minute products.

“We’re very pleased with the response we’ve received from guests to our online cake ordering Web site, which launched just over a year ago,” Ms. Cronin said. “Offering an online ordering option makes it even easier for our guests to customize and order ice cream cakes for all of life’s occasions, from birthdays to graduations to Father’s Day.

“Guests can place an order from the comfort of their homes or while they’re on-the-go on a mobile device, and then pick up their custom cake at their local Baskin-Robbins shop just 24 hours later. We’ve also seen a halo effect from online ordering in our restaurants, as guests come in to pick-up their cakes and in turn often purchase other items while they’re in-store.”

Mobile instant win
Meanwhile, Baskin-Robbins’ sister brand, Dunkin’ Donuts, is continuing its streak of rolling out mobile instant win games to celebrate the release of new products. The Cookie Dunk Instant Win Game was designed to unveil the new lineup of Oreo and Chips Ahoy-flavored beverages and donuts, which will be available through the summer at participating Dunkin’ Donuts locations across the nation.

Several of the new items include the Chips Ahoy! Crunch Donut, cookie flavored iced coffees and Oreo and Chips Ahoy! Coolatta frozen beverages. Guests in the mood for ice cream can try out Baskin-Robbins’ flavor of the month for June, Dunkin’ Donuts Coffee ‘N Donut.

Through July 15, consumers can visit the mobile or online site to play the game daily and receive the chance to instantly win prizes including a $3 or $5 mobile gift card to Dunkin’ Donuts, a year’s worth of branded coffee, a Jet Blue travel certificate or additional entries into the Grand Prize Sweepstakes, which offers four JetBlue travel certificates.

Last week, Dunkin’ Donuts addressed consumers’ summertime infatuation with baseball, cool drinks and free stuff in a new mobile game giving residents of Massachusetts and New Hampshire a chance to win daily prizes by “scratching” off a virtual Mango Passion Fruit Coolatta drink (see story).

“In this day and age we are all connected to our mobile devices and Dunkin’ Donuts knows our customers are no different,” Ms. Cronin said. “We pride ourselves on being a fun and engaging brand and this can be seen through our social and mobile campaigns.

“We’re always looking for ways to differentiate our brand and our promotions, so the new Dunkin’ Donuts “Cookie Dunk Instant Win Game” is a perfect way to connect with busy consumers while they’re on-the-go and to highlight our new Oreo and Chips Ahoy! menu items. Mobile has been an extremely powerful marketing tool for our brand, and will continue to be an important part of our overall marketing efforts in the future.”

Final Take
Alex Samuely is an editorial assistant on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York