Erin Vogel, SVP, Central Region Content Lead at Spark Foundry, fondly recalled teenage visits to malls and buying Auntie Anne's pretzels and lemonade. Fast-forward to today, she said, and the brand has had to evolve as malls have downsized. She interviewed Joshua Krauss, director of digital marketing, Auntie Anne's Pretzels, on Thursday.
Krauss talked about the brand's beginnings 31 years ago at a farmers market and its move into malls, food trucks, and airports. The No. 1 barrier it has is accessibility to its stores. So it has to go where the people are. It also looks at how people are buying things today, including that they will spend $8 for delivery of its product. "Off-premise in total is a huge focus of growth."
But getting people to understand that they can get buckets of pretzel nuggets delivered to their home and have a fun watch party is an area of great study, Krauss said. "How to tap into the right person who is receptive to brand and give them the knowledge, power to understand there are other ways to consume us."
Having recently relaunched its loyalty app, Auntie Anne's found it had three tiers of consumers. The most casual guests were buying three to five times a year. The heaviest were coming in almost once a week (they also happen to work at the places where the brand has stores).
One big value the app gives the brand, he said, is that it is one true place to connect purchase behavior to an individual so that specific messaging can be created. The company is working on rolling out online ordering later this year.
Its mantra is "Don't focus on the value of an individual transaction, focus on the lifetime value of the guest." For, while those visiting more often spend less per transaction that the system average, annually, they are "really meaningful."