- 7-Eleven has added football-related augmented reality (AR) experiences to some of its stores as the NFL's regular season kicks off, the company announced in a press release. In-store visitors can unlock football face filters and activities through the chain's own mobile app, which also lets customers earn loyalty points to redeem for free products.
- Participating stores also will have scannable codes throughout the aisles that let customers earn double 7Rewards points and unlock selfie experiences. People can earn points as they complete the levels of its mobile game and share face filters with friends on social media. The convenience chain aims to drive repeat visits with rotating AR features, which can be accessed after customers unlock them and leave the store.
- The in-store AR experience lets fans snap an "autographed" selfie with a virtual version of Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott. Games and filters will be team-specific in Baltimore, Dallas, Denver, Detroit and Washington, D.C., per the release. 7-Eleven also partnered with Postmates for game day product delivery in more than 30 markets.
While a number of big brands have partnered with third-party apps like Facebook and Snapchat for AR experiences, 7-Eleven continues to make AR a priority within its own app. Leveraging third-party AR experiences can help brands reach new customers while 7-Eleven's example points to the technology's potential for driving engagements with existing customers. 7-Eleven has embraced mobile technologies like AR, chatbots and rewards programs to drive customer loyalty as the chain runs seasonal promotions as well as efforts around the World Cup and feature films.
AR features are becoming a key part of the chain's in-store promotions, as 7-Eleven demonstrated in May with a nationwide tie-in for the movie "Deadpool 2." That campaign also included "zapcodes" throughout its stores that customers could scan to unlock AR experiences, similar to the football effort this fall. This strategy highlights how retailers are leveraging increasingly sophisticated mobile tech to connect with customers, bridge the gap between mobile devices and physical retail and drive in-store visits and sales.
As part of its football-related promotions, 7-Eleven this year is emphasizing the convenience it provides for tailgaters and "home-gaters" who need food, drinks, party supplies and last-minute items to help enjoy watching games. The chain's deal with Postmates, a popular food delivery service, aligns with 7-Eleven's brand emphasis on convenience, making the partnership appear to be a solid match.
7-Eleven in April was given a 73% rating on the best in-store experiences, in line with the 74% rating for the broader retail industry, a study by the Temkin Group found. This may signal that the company's marketing efforts over the past year through entertaining in-store experiences is resonating with customers.