Through its partnership with Purdue University, the Indiana chain is giving college football an opportunity to win free gas for a year.
Valparaiso, Ind.-based Family Express earlier this year entered a multi-year sports marketing agreement with Purdue University Athletics and its multimedia rights holder, Purdue Sports Properties. As the college football season winds down, the deal has exceeded expectations.
“Sports marketing for Family Express is not about charity and support of local communities as much as it is about effectively promoting our brands,” Family Express President and CEO Gus Olympidis told Convenience Store Decisions. “Sports marketing is also about expanding our presence in other communication platforms through sports radio and especially Social Media.
The Purdue-Family Express partnership centers on various social media promotions and contests throughout both the college football and basketball seasons.
Specifically, Purdue fans have the opportunity to win “FREE GAS FOR A YEAR” at select football and basketball games and can download the Family Express mobile app to monitor gas prices at certain locations. Additionally, fans can “Save a Fortune on Fuel” through the F.E. Perks loyalty program providing them the opportunity to earn cents-off-per-gallon rewards when making purchases inside the store.
Family Express, a Hoosier company operating stores throughout Northwest and North Central Indiana, is known for its contagious, friendly greeting when you come through the door. With 52 store and more than 500 employees, the chain is known for its innovations. For example, the company owns and operates its own distribution center, built a state-of-the-art headquarters complete with a training center and recently expanded its warehouse to develop additional fresh foods.
It’s Hip to be Square
Among the innovations in the Family Express commissary is its square doughnuts–“square because we don’t cut corners,” Olympidis said.
But the square doughnuts resonate with customers and have been the driving force behind one of the most successful college sports promotions to date for the chain. At halftime of Purdue football games, fans have a chance to toss a football through the center of the doughnut from 15 yards away to win free gas for a year.
Watch fans win free gas for a year:
Getting free gas for a year usually gets everyone’s attention,” Olympidis said. “Everyone loves a Winner. The fan is the guy next door, our customer, and getting the guy next door to correlate winning and a fun experience with our brands is what we are trying to accomplish.”