Dunkin' Donuts turns Snapchat users into virtual reindeer
Dunkin’ Donuts, the coffee and bakery chain with more than 12,400 restaurants worldwide, is getting into the holiday spirit with several digital and mobile promotions. On Monday, the company starts a “12 Days of Dunkin” sweepstakes to urge people to sign up for its loyalty program DD Perks Rewards. Enrollees who enter the promo code LIVENATION are entered into daily drawings to win a $250 gift card from concert promoter Live Nation, and have a chance to win a grand prize trip to see a live show.
Dunkin’ is giving people a chance to unlock a holiday-themed Snapchat 3D Lens from the chain’s Twitter feed (@DunkinDonuts) and a digital billboard in Times Square in New York City. The selfie lens transforms smartphone users into a virtual reindeer, while flipping to front-facing camera opens an Augmented Reality World Lens that turns the surroundings into a winter landscape.
Dunkin’ Donuts app users who reload $10 onto their in-app Dunkin' Donuts card with Mastercard’s Masterpass will receive an additional $10 to spend. The chain also introduced holiday-themed emojis on its mobile app.
Dunkin’ Donuts caps off a busy year for mobile-based promotions with a holiday-themed campaign that offers mobile users a way to have some fun while getting into the spirit of the season. Dunkin' has shown repeatedly that it finds value in Snapchat, a platform that has lost some of its luster this year as growth slowed but is still an important way to engage with younger consumers. The chain's digital strategy reflects the need for a variety of platform-specific offerings to reach consumers as they jump around online.
As the seasons changed from summer into fall, and coffee drinkers switched from iced coffee to hot beverages, the company rolled out Halloween-themed mobile promotions that included a Snapchat game called “Donut Pop,” a splashy Times Square billboard, and Instagram contest and a Twitter share campaign with the #DDHalloweenContest tag. Dunkin’ also introduced the first Halloween-themed icing designs for its doughnuts with a video resurrecting an old internet meme, "Dancing Pumpkin Man."
The chain is seeking ways to boost profitability and make stores easier to run for franchisees. Sales at U.S. locations open at least a year rose 0.6% in Q3 2017 from a year earlier, while overall revenue rose 8.3% to $224.1 million. CEO Nigel Travis said the company has been making cuts to its menu at about 1,000 locations in the U.S., including some doughnut varieties. Too many different kinds of flavored coffee syrups, sandwich breads and other items make it harder on employees to provide quick service, he told USA Today.
The company is testing out whether to shorten its name to remove “Donuts” as part of a rebranding that encompasses other kinds of food throughout the day. A location in Pasadena, CA, is now testing the shortened name, and a second location in the company’s hometown of Quincy, MA, will open a store with just the Dunkin’ name will open in the next year. Sales this year were lifted by non-doughnut promotions like the two-for-$2 egg and cheese wraps.