Industry News | July 12, 2005

Jeff Gordon Featured In New Blimpie Ads

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Blimpie International is following up its launch of Blimpie Guy spokes-sub with a sports-themed broadcast and integrated marketing campaign delivered by supplier partners Frito-Lay and Pepsi. Jeff Gordon, racing legend and Pepsi spokesperson, is featured in TV and radio spots, launching the week of July 11, as well as on the Blimpie Web site, in-store signage, and packaging for the ‘Champion’s Combo’ meal. In addition, a trip to meet Gordon is the grand prize in the ‘Hottest Race of the Year’ sweepstakes.

The new ‘Champion’s Combo’ meal deal will be available for a limited time at participating Blimpie restaurants throughout the country starting June 1. The combo includes a choice of any 6- or 12-inch sandwich or wrap, and features Frito-Lay brand chips like Lay’s, Cheetos, and Doritos, and any 32-ounce Pepsi fountain beverage in a specially themed Jeff Gordon cup.

In addition, Blimpie guests can go to www.blimpie.com and enter the password found on their cup for a chance to win the ‘Hottest Race of the Year’ sweepstakes, which promises a thrilling grand prize: a trip for four to meet Jeff Gordon and his crew at the Ford 400 Nextel Cup race at Homestead-Miami Speedway this November – the final race of the year where the NEXTEL Cup Series points champion is crowned. Other prizes include authentic leather race jackets and Blimpie gift checks.

“This new campaign connects the iconic Blimpie Guy with an icon of the racetrack – Jeff Gordon,” says Mark Mears, chief marketing officer of Blimpie International. “Our ‘Champion’s Combo’ is aptly named as Blimpie is proud to associate with winners like Frito-Lay, Pepsi and Jeff Gordon. This promotion is part of our overall marketing campaign that promotes our Real. Fresh. Taste.™ brand positioning and the transformation of Blimpie from our heritage as a traditional neighborhood sub shop to a more consumer-driven, contemporary deli.”

Created by Lou Beres and Associates in Chicago, the integrated marketing communications campaign worth $12 million overall features both television and radio commercials that will be broadcast in 29 markets, including Atlanta, Phoenix, and New York City. Fifteen and 30-second versions will air on local network affiliate and cable stations.

Blimpie Guy is a fun-loving, light-hearted character who tells the Blimpie story in a warm, humorous, and engaging style by challenging perceptions created by key national competitors. The spokes-sub was originally inspired by the talking sandwich character that appeared as part of a branded entertainment opportunity in a popular episode of HBO’s ‘Sex and the City.’

The new integrated marketing campaign complements the recently launched refreshed logo, contemporary restaurant design, and updated menu featuring hot, new panini-grilled Ciabatta bread sandwiches. The refreshed Blimpie logo reflects a more contemporary design, and the redesigned restaurant décor includes modern, earth-tone paint and tile, wainscoting, pendant lighting and hardwood laminate flooring. These updates reflect the 41-year-old restaurant chain’s position as a pacesetter in the sandwich segment.

News and information presented in this release has not been corroborated by QSR, Food News Media, or Journalistic, Inc.