Pilot Flying J Jumps On College Football Bandwagon

In conjunction with Pilot Flying J’s second year as the Official Travel Center of the SEC network, the brand is launching a campaign that positions the driver travel centers as the one-stop shop for all college football game-day travel essentials. 

Themed “Welcome To,” it includes creative from 3 Sons running across TV, digital platforms and billboards that will continue to roll out in an expanded capacity through 2019. 

The 360-degree efforts include exclusive myPilot app promotions and partnerships with ESPN/SEC personalities Paul Finebaum and Laura Rutledge, ORCA, Johnsonville and Dr Pepper. PFJ has Subway franchises and Denny’s restaurants as part of many of its travel centers and they are featured in some of the marketing. 



The effort “elevates” the second year of the four-year ESPN and SEC networks sponsorship, said Whitney Haslam Johnson, chief experience officer for Pilot Flying J.

The TV spot features Carol, an enthusiastic staffer who showcases what Pilot Flying J has to offer to every guest that comes through the door, including college football fans. The spot will air on SEC Network, ABC and ESPNproperties and run digitally on, SECNetwork.comand the  ESPN app.

The football-themed campaign will be integrated into a larger brand campaign. In Pilot Flying J’s home city of Knoxville, Tenn., “Welcome To” creative is being tested on billboards.

Fans can pick up ORCA drinkware and coolers in travel centers across the country from Nov. 1 (or until supplies last). In SEC-specific markets, ORCA products will be regionally branded, featuring emblazoned logos of participating SEC schools.

Throughout the college football season, Pilot Flying J and ORCA will also be partnering to deliver exclusive giveaway opportunities like the “ultimate tailgate package,” a weekly giveaway at all SEC Nation stops.

The sponsorship provides exposure for Pilot Flying J on SEC Network programming and within the SEC footprint through SEC Nation, the network’s traveling football pregame show. The company will also be the presenting sponsor for three of SEC Nation’s regular-season broadcasts.

The brand will bring its mobile “Fueling All Fans Experience” unit to various college campuses alongside SEC Nation, which will offer two of Pilot Flying J’s in-store food items right outside the stadium: cold brew coffee and Johnsonville Cheddar Beer Brats.

Fans can also enter on-site to win the weekly “ultimate tailgate package” giveaway from ORCA and Pilot Flying J.

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