Bojangles is deepening its relationship with Dale Earnhardt Jr., securing the NASCAR legend's digital studio naming rights. Earnhardt's content company, Dirty Mo Media, is now recording in the Bojangles Studio, a move Bojangles says will boost its profile with Earnhardt's devoted fans.
Besides the brand signage, the arrangement includes plenty of opportunities for the company to gets mentions of its chicken, biscuits and sweet tea on the air.
A little over a year ago, the Charlotte, North Carolina-based QSR chain teamed up with Earnhardt as part of its brand relaunch campaign. With his distinctive "It's Bo time," Earnhardt became the voice of Bojangles.
Earnhardt's popular podcast, "The Dale Jr. Download," as well as industry-insider show, "Door Bumper Clear," are fan favorites with a tremendous overlap with Bojangles' target audience, according to Jackie Woodward, Bojangles' chief brand and marketing officer.
"We share the same consumer base. Our customers love NASCAR -- they love sports. And Dale is so respected and well known," she says.
While NASCAR has been losing fans in recent years, "we know that our customers love NASCAR, and that's what matters to us."
Getting involved with his popular podcast seemed like a natural way to intensify the brand's connection with him. "So he's now broadcasting from the Bojangles Studio. He loves our product. And our customers love him. So this just seems like a perfect fit for the brand."
Woodward says the deal offers the opportunity to create content and piggyback on the success of the podcast, which averages 150,000 downloads per episode, with 4.2 million average weekly impressions. "That's a lot of customers," she adds. And besides over-indexing on NASCAR, "[those customers] over-index on all forms of media as well. So this podcast supports our growth goals," she says.
Bojangles recently announced plans to expand in Florida, Georgia and Tennessee. It's also planning its first restaurants in Ohio, New York and Texas.
"This gives us a national platform to talk about our food," says Woodward.