With Super Bowl LIII just around the corner, QSRs and fast-casual restaurants may still have time to drive down the field and score more customers orders for the big game. But how can this be done given we’re fast approaching the countdown to kickoff?  There’s no more time for spending big bucks on national ad campaigns or shooting a catchy commercial to air during the game in the hopes it goes viral. 

One thing a franchisee can consider is executing a highly targeted mobile proximity marketing campaign between now and kickoff to entice hungry fans near their locations. With the right offer hitting the consumer at precisely the right time you may be able to intercept them on the way to the market to pick up that party platter or to the liquor store to get their favorite brew and get them to drop by your restaurant for a large party size order. Just like Patriot fans feel like it’s never too late in the game for Tom Brady to pull out the win, you too can become a late game hero with a laser-focused, strategically timed campaign.

So, how can a franchisee make this happen? Well, it boils down to three fundamental elements.

1. Game Planning and Strategy:

  • Research and understand the demographics of the population around your restaurants to determine the reach needed for market penetration.
  • Geo-fence all restaurant locations accordingly.
  • Match promotions to specific audience targets via 3rd party audience data for a personalized end-user experience
    • For example, Kids Eat Free Promotion = Parents with children under 12 or Senior Citizens Discount Promotion
  • Assign creatives to specific weekly promotions
    • For example, Sales Sundays to run on Sundays, Weekend promotions to kick off Friday to run on Thursdays, etc.

2. Creative Playmaking:

  • Work with Design Team in gathering the necessary assets to assemble custom rich media creative ad units that highlight specific promotions while maintaining the overall look and feel of your brand
  • Develop custom landing page experiences for each promotion including mapping/restaurant information, more details on promotions, and how to redeem
  • Refresh creatives by introducing new promotions throughout the campaign
  • Optimize creatives by animating second round of refreshes including highlighting savings for each offering

3. Clean Execution and Optimization:

  • Day Parting – Only running advertising to coincide with restaurant operating hours, and promoting off-hours specials and meal deals
  • Adding in new audience segments from data sources to expand the reach
  • Adjust / Allocation budgets towards better-performing mediums, for example, desktop units were underperforming so reallocated those dollars to tablet and mobile
  • Adjust the landing page so call out for each promotion is more prominent


Also, don’t forget that almost everyone watching the game will be checking their phones throughout — posting comments, pictures and videos, following their fantasy picks, and checking their bets. All of these activities present an opportunity for engagement and with the halftime show lasting more than double its normal time there just may be a window for more customers to cross your touchdown line and place an order.

But before we sign off let’s take a look at some of the more outrageous offers and giveaways happening during this year’s Super Bowl. We all know that there will be a number of stunts and crazy offers leading up to the game. So let’s see what some of the big companies and brands are doing to make a splash.


Pizza Hut, which became the official pizza sponsor of the NFL this year, is turning the spotlight on the unsung heroes of Super Bowl Sunday—the families making their own special deliveries in maternity wards around the country. They’ll be awarding the parents of the first baby born after kickoff on Super Bowl Sunday with free pizza for a year to fuel them through 365 sleepless nights, and tickets to Super Bowl LIV to make sure next year’s game is equally as unforgettable.


Courtesy of Hardees Instagram

Or Burger Chain Hardee’s which announced that any “biscuit” returned to the “house” for a touchdown during Sunday’s big game will unlock a free, Made From Scratch Sausage biscuit for everyone that visits a participating Hardee’s location on Friday, February 8 from 7 to 10 a.m.



And finally, Burger King, which after a 12-year absence from the Super Bowl will be returning by partnering with DoorDash, to let customers order a “Mystery Box” that they need to keep until the big game on Feb. 3. The Mystery Box will arrive with instructions to follow as Burger King prepares to air a 45-second commercial during the Super Bowl. The partnership seeks to reach a broader group of customers who may not have tried home delivery from its restaurants as it competes with archrival McDonald’s in mobile delivery. Similarly, DoorDash benefits from a partnership with the fast-food chain as it faces off against competitors Uber Eats and GrubHub.

But even if it may be a little late in the game to get something going for the Super Bowl LII, a smart franchise owner should be thinking about how to capitalize on the next big opportunity. For example, NCAA March Madness is the kind of event that offers an extraordinarily rich opportunity for QSR and fast casual restaurants. It spans weeks rather than days and attracts a broad audience demographic with a predilection for fast food. So don’t wait and get started now.   

We hope everyone enjoys the game and all the festivities that come this Sunday, and certainly surround yourself with friends, family, and great food!

Don’t forget to Register for our Webinar to learn how a Smashburger franchisee used ShopAdvisor’s mobile marketing to increase customer engagement and grow revenues

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