Jimmy John’s is launching a multichannel campaign to promote its $3 Little John subs via a Snapchat Lens and mobile game that uses augmented reality (AR). A national television spot, posted to the brand’s YouTube, featuring rapper Lil’ Jon further complements the campaign. Little John subs are “skinny mini-versions” of the sandwich chain’s seven original sandwiches, making them the first permanent value addition to the chain’s menu in its 36-year history.

To play the Jimmy John’s AR game, Snapchat users must catch as many falling sandwiches—which have been digitally shrunk—as they can in their mouths within 30 seconds. The game uses AR technology to overlay images on live selfies, which users can snap from the game and share on the platform. Encouraging users to play the game and share selfies increases the campaign’s reach among Snapchat’s younger audience for that 70 percent of users add AR effects to images they share on the app—according to Snapchat’s Q1 company metrics.

Creating a sponsored Snapchat filter-game for its $3 little subs marks one of Jimmy John’s many moves to attract younger consumers. In 2018, the company introduced tap-and-go payments to emphasize mobile orders. To highlight its commitment to ensuring freshness, the company also created a 30-second video spot that read aloud negative tweets about Grubhub and Seamless. 

Jimmy John’s recently took its delivery efforts a step further with a contest giving one fan up to $250,000 to go toward buying a home inside a Jimmy John’s delivery zone. Given Jimmy John’s strict delivery zones—which don’t utilize third-party delivery services and only deliver up to five minutes of its stores—it employed “The Home in the Zone” contest. From August 12-October 4, consumers could enter the contest by writing a 250-word essay saying why they want to move into a Jimmy John’s delivery zone. The contest held three rounds before selecting a grand prize winner.

According to QSR Magazine, on September 25, Jimmy John’s announced its acquisition from Inspire Brands, the parent company to Sonic Drive-In, Arby’s, Buffalo Wild Wings and Rusty Taco. Jimmy John’s has more than 2,800 locations across 43 states and, according to Technomic, is the 30th largest US restaurant chain with 2017 sales reaching nearly $2.36 billion.

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