Dunkin' Still Relies On The 'Old' Mobile Ads

by , Dec 10, 2008, 3:05 PM
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Dunkin Donuts cars When Nigel Travis takes command of Dunkin' Brands as CEO next month, he may want a Toyota Yaris as his company car, particularly if it carries a seven-foot-tall iced coffee in the back. Many people at Dunkin' Brands, parent company of Dunkin' Donuts and Baskin-Robbins, ask for the tricked-out orange or pink cars.

But John Giaquinto, manager of field marketing services, isn't giving up even one of his 20 Yaris. "TV crews really love them," he points out, "so it's more likely that we'll get on TV."

The eye-catching cars are the latest addition to Dunkin's fleet of vehicles used primarily for sampling at about 1,000 events a year, from the grand opening of a new shop to big-name concerts and festivals. Some of the fleet has been around for several years--and by sampling vehicle standards, they are novel, with steam rising from the top of white coffee cups, for example, in pink cars.

Giaquinto says the Canton, Mass.-based company used to send out only large vehicles, but decided to downsize to Yaris after gas prices began to rise. "We've made it to Phoenix but not [yet] to the West Coast," he says.

The orange Yarises--so admittedly difficult to say in the plural that they've taken to calling them Yarisi--have their back ends chopped off and then an iced coffee with a straw is inserted that holds equipment necessary for sampling events. "It's our best combination," Giaquinto says. "It draws impact and interest. It's utilitarian. There are no back seats, the 'cup' opens to hold equipment, and it can work with a larger vehicle or with a shop to keep it loaded."

"It draws incredible interest. I've driven around in one. You go into a convenience store and when you come out there are all kinds of people taking photographs," he says. "People say, 'That's my dream car!' It's frightening to drive. You have a trucker on one side, blowing his horn and pointing to his coffee and on the other a bunch of teenage girls plastered up against their car window taking pictures of you.

"It's amazing to see the power of the brand at work."

5 comments on "Dunkin' Still Relies On The 'Old' Mobile Ads ".

  1. Jim Peake from SpeechRep Media, Inc.
    commented on: December 11, 2008 at 5:31 a.m.

    notice Dunkin Brands is aligned with Toyota and not Ford or GM.

  2. Brandon Clarke from The Driven Marketing Group
    commented on: December 11, 2008 at 11:03 a.m.

    there is no question, this medium works well for dynamic brands. shameless plug: www.DrivenMediaOnline.com

  3. Michael Newhouse from WCN Group
    commented on: December 11, 2008 at 11:32 a.m.

    The 'Old' Mobile Ads work! It leaves a lasting impression and one that attracts attention as mentioned in the article, news stations love the cars. As a result, the value that a brand receives from media impressions can be measured and further evaluated for future campaigns.

  4. Chad Kroepel from HEILBrice
    commented on: December 11, 2008 at 12:04 p.m.

    In a world with a rapidly changing media landscape, it's good to see success in the alternative arena... Now where's my iced caramel latte?

  5. Jonathan Lin from Ringleader Digital
    commented on: December 11, 2008 at 4:30 p.m.

    Now that’s definitely branding at work! The next step is to integrate ‘old mobile’ with next generation mobile …advertising that is. I know I would text to a short code to get a coupon every time I spotted the car.

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