Hoagiefest is convenience store Wawa’s celebration of the hoagie sandwich. A hoagie, for my friends back in Canada, is a submarine sandwich. This year’s celebration runs from June 1 until July 26. Donna and I went there today for lunch.
Wawa is the beloved convenience store here in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland and Virginia with 570 different locations. The chain was started in 1964 and to celebrate their 45th Anniversary, they brought back their very successful 2008 Hoagiefest marketing campaign. The campaign features Mr. Kotter Doppelganger, the John Lennon-like Hoagie Man based in a Yellow Submarine-like environment promoting Four Different Shorti-sized hoagie sandwiches. The Yellow Submarine images make sense a chain started in the 60’s selling hoagies (subs) but the marketing team have gone all out with a themed microsite that features 6 Beatles-inspired hoagie related songs, Hoagiefest merchandise and a contest for submitting your own Hoagiefest song or video to go along with any of the 6 previously created songs.
As a marketer, I really appreciated the integration of Wawa’s campaign which included a major TV advertising buy, online advertising, a viral contest and great in-store themed point of purchase advertising materials like the themed touch screen ordering devices that I used to purchase today’s hoagies. Four stores, one in each state, will have live Hoagiefest events including a 1/4 Mile Long Hoagie, Kara-hoagie sing-a-long contests and of course a hoagie eating relay race. Lots of give aways and free food. Unfortunately the live events won’t happen at our store in New Hope but still good event marketing integrated into a great integrated campaign.
Hoagiefest features a different Shorti (6 inch) hoagie every 15 days. The sandwiches, in sequence, are Italian, Cheesesteak, Turkey & Meatball and each are just $2.99 during their 15 days of Hoagiefest. Donna decided to go for the Turkey Hoagie. Her hoagie came with turkey, provolone, tomatoes, lettuce, mayo, mustard, salt, pepper and oregano. The 6 inch hoagie was the perfect size for lunch and along with some potato chips and diet lemonade iced tea was a perfect lunch time filler. The hoagie was very good, the crunch of the fresh lettuce contrasted with dense soft bun, cheese and meats. The mayo and mustard combined into a nice sauce in the sandwich, coating the meats with a tangy sweet flavour.
I went for the featured Cheesesteak Shorti. I had the option of several cheeses but went for the Provolone (no Cheese Whiz). I also added grilled onions some salt, pepper and oregano. Wawa gives you plenty of options on your hoagie but I went with a classic cheesesteak combo. Again the 6 inch sandwich, along with chips and lemonade ice tea, was perfect for lunch. The first bite had the taste of Grilled Onions coming strongly thru. The were sweet tasting and had a slightly smokey flavour. The second taste brought the Meat and Provolone to the forefront. The meat was mild in terms of spice but combined with the cheese a classic cheesesteak taste that I have come to love here in PA. A very good sandwich and a great value for $2.99.
Net-net good sandwichs and a great marketing promotion.
Wawa #185, 341 West Bridge Street, New Hope, PA, 18938 215-862-9330