• Amazon Plans Larger, Suburban 'Go' Locations
    Amazon is planning a new and larger suburban format for its cashierless Amazon Go convenience stores. Plans call for a 6,150-square-foot Amazon Go to open in Mill Creek, Washington, followed by another new-concept Go store in metropolitan Los Angeles. These are much bigger than current 24 Amazon Go stores, which range from 450 to 2,700 square feet and are in high-traffic urban locations in Chicago, New York, San Francisco and Seattle.
  • TGI Fridays Offers Free Appetizers To Delivery Drivers
    TGI Fridays will offer uniformed delivery drivers with work credentials a free appetizer on Feb. 10 to say thanks for working during the tough holiday season. The offer is available to "every truck driver, every FedEx, UPS, USPS and DHL delivery person; every courier, carrier and crusader,” according to the fast-casual chain. Fridays also is inviting consumers to share their appreciation for delivery drivers by using the hashtag #FridaysAPPreciation on social media.
  • Ibotta Super Bowl Promotion Offers Free Snacks
    New Ibotta users can receive a rebate on Super Bowl snacks like cookies, chips and frozen pizza. The savings website, which also can be used via an app, partners with retailers including Walmart, Target and Old Navy to provide cash back or rebates on select purchases.  Ibotta’s Big Game Bundle, available Jan. 19 through Feb. 8, offers new users a rebate on select food items, up to $20 in total. 
  • Chicago Launches 'Guerrilla' Marketing Campaign
    Chicago is launching a campaign that promote itself as an influential world city. “Created by Chicago ad agency Energy BBDO, the pro bono ‘Chicago Not in Chicago’ campaign touts a long list of homegrown innovations — from the cellphone to the skyscraper — that have changed the world, but with little credit given to the city of origin,” per the Chicago Tribune.  “The campaign will live on a new website featuring quirky videos that the city hopes will be widely shared on social media.”
  • Gatorade Signs Its First HBCU Athlete
    Gatorade has signed a deal with Jackson State University quarterback Shedeur Sanders, marking the first athlete from a Historically Black College or University (HBCU) to sign a Name Image Likeness (NIL) deal with the brand. The signing represents PepsiCo’s long-term commitment to HBCUs and fostering Black talent, according to the company, which includes a partnership with Shedeur Sanders’ dad and coach, NFL legend Deon Sanders.
  • Schnucks Markets Aids Local Restaurants
    Schnuck Markets is expanding its support of local restaurants via plans to carry a line of Asian items from a St. Louis restaurant at all its 111 stores in Missouri, Illinois, Indiana and Wisconsin. To help eateries hit hard financially during the COVID-19 pandemic, the grocery store chain launched "Local Grab and Go," a program to carry a selection of restaurant menu items at some of its supermarkets.
  • Air Fryers Attract Influencers, Become Billion-Dollar Business
    What was supposed to be an appliance used for crisping food with minimal oil has turned into a pandemic godsend.  “For some cooks, it has nearly replaced ovens or microwaves for heating frozen finger foods, refreshing leftovers or cooking meals and desserts,” per The New York Times. “Social-media influencers, especially on TikTok, have made careers out of sharing new recipes and unexpected uses for the appliance.”
  • Caesars Entertainment Plans Rebranding For Bally's
    Caesars Entertainment plans to bring back the 70-year-old Horseshoe brand when it transforms Bally’s Las Vegas via a multimillion-dollar renovation project. "The Horseshoe brand is the most legendary brand in gaming," Jason Gregorec, senior vice president and general manager of the property, told USA Today. "To be able to bring the Horseshoe brand to the Las Vegas Strip at the most iconic intersection of Las Vegas is a perfect fit.”
  • Sam's Club Preps First Super Bowl Spot
    Sam’s Club's Super Bowl spot will highlight its "VIP-worthy" services and merchandise. Featuring comedian and actor Kevin Hart, the warehouse club chain spot will promote Scan & Go, its in-app shopping feature that lets members scan products and skip the checkout line when shopping in club. “The ad showcases Hart shopping under the assumption that he’s receiving a VIP experience because of his celebrity status,” per Progressive Grocer. “Unbeknownst to him, he’s using a service available for members with the Sam’s Club app.”
  • 7-Eleven Launches Delivery Subscription Service
    7-Eleven is launching the 7NOW Gold Pass on its app, which will allow unlimited delivery for a $5.95 monthly fee. The pass pays for itself after about three delivery orders per month, according to the Irving, Texas-based operator of more than 14,000 convenience stores in the United States and Canada. The retailer also began testing online order delivery in California using Nuro autonomous vehicles. 
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