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Krispy Kreme taps mobile app to bolster foot traffic

Doughnuts franchise Krispy Kreme is letting users track down the nearest location to find their favorite breakfast sweets via a new mobile application.

The Krispy Kreme app is available for iPhone and Android devices and uses alerts to let users know which nearby location has the freshest doughnuts. After learning that 30 percent of traffic to the company’s Web site and social media networks came in through smartphones, Krispy Kreme worked with agency Barkley to develop the app.

“Krispy Kreme is a convenience purchase, so providing a consumer on the go access to the address and directions to their nearest store and sending them alerts about a new product or limited-time offering can go a long way in increasing frequency of visits to our shops,” said Lafeea Watson, public relations and media manager at Krispy Kreme, Winston-Salem, NC.

Krispy Kreme is a breakfast franchise that operates stores in 675 locations in 21 countries.

Hot treats
Krispy Kreme locations are recognized by consumers with lights in the store that indicate if a store’s doughnuts are fresh.

Using the Krispy Kreme Hot Light app, users can find the closest Krispy Kreme location with a picture of the lights.

The app uses the device’s GPS technology or a consumer’s ZIP code to track nearby Krispy Kreme locations.

Users can filter the results to show either three, seven or fifteen locations.

Each store location features a map with directions and a click-to-call function.

Additionally, users can share the location through social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter.

After users store a location as their favorite, the main page of the app shows if the hot light is on at the store.

The app also promotes Krispy Kreme’s products with banner ads that run along the bottom of the screen.

The ads expand once tapped on and highlight the company’s seasonal treats.

Krispy Kreme promotes its red velvet doughnuts via the app

In addition to the app, Krispy Kreme has also rolled out a mobile Web site that lets users find nearby locations and check-in via a foursquare link.

Krispy Kreme is also using a Web widget and social media to help consumers find the nearest location.

Sweet additions
Krispy Kreme is also building its mobile database via the app with an alerts program that lets users opt-in to receive updates when the hot light is on at their stored location.

Consumers can choose how many push notifications they want to receive per day and filter which hours they want to be contacted.

Users can also sign up for Krispy Kreme’s email newsletters via the app.

For the holiday season, Krispy Kreme placed QR codes on season-themed boxes that consumers could scan to watch a promotional video on the company’s YouTube page.

By using alerts, apps, QR codes and a mobile site, Krispy Kreme is showing that mobile plays a key role in its marketing initiatives.

“Ten percent of our guests say that they stopped in because they saw the hot light on when passing by the store,” Ms. Watson said.

“Now you don’t have to be circling by our store to know that we are serving doughnuts hot off the line,” she said.

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is editorial assistant on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York