DALLAS: 7-Eleven is launching a broad marketing campaign highlighting its 75th anniversary, and introducing the new Big Eats Deli Sandwiches.The primary PR goal is convincing consumers that convenience-store sandwiches don't have to taste like vending-machine cardboard, said marketing communications manager Dana Manley. To that end, 7-Eleven submitted its five new creations for judging by the American Tasting Institute, an organization of executive chefs.
Early promotion in four test markets - Dallas, Colorado Springs, CO, Alexandria, VA, and West Palm Beach, FL - played up the "Gold Taste Award
bestowed by the judging panel. Press releases also emphasized participation of partners like Kraft Foods, Land O'Lakes, Nestle, Prime Deli, and Sara Lee. Similar strategies will be rolled out nationally.
One challenge 7-Eleven faces is educating consumers that when the use-by date reads tomorrow, it doesn't mean a sandwich has been in the cooler for a week, Manley said. Therefore, press materials stress the chain's daily fresh-food delivery system.
Sampling is key to the marketing strategy, so PR operatives will deliver sandwiches along with press releases, and 7-Eleven is using radio contests and remotes to give away products and get new customers into the stores.
Businesses near stores may also be blanketed with product sheets and coupons.