Company: Jack in the Box
Agency Partners: Small Girls PR (creative)
Duration: June 27 – July 1, 2022
J-Hope, a member of Korean pop supergroup BTS, is releasing his debut solo album Jack in the Box on July 15. The fast-food chain by the same name didn’t waste any time jumping on the opportunity by tying in a promotion for one of J-Hope’s favorite beverages: Sprite.
After the name of J-Hope’s album was announced, BTS Army members, the group's consumer juggernaut of a fan base, were already making the connection to the brand Jack in the Box on social media.
The buzz from fans caught the attention of the creatives at Small Girls PR, which produces marketing campaigns for the restaurant.
“We just knew we had to jump in and figure out a way to celebrate the uncanny likeness and also hopefully get Jack in the Box included in some of the inevitable press stories that would come out upon the release of the solo album,” said Mallory Blair, Small Girls cofounder and CEO.
To make that happen, the Small Girls team started conducting research and learned that J-Hope, a rapper and dancer, frequently referred to the soft drink Sprite in interviews. In fact, he used a catchphrase: “And Sprite.”
Jack in the Box also offers Sprite.
“The Army knows that J-Hope mentioned loving Sprite whenever he is asked about a lot of questions — whether it's food related or not — and we took advantage of the fact that we knew that insider information; we were in on the joke,” said Blair.
The Small Girls team started working on campaign ideas in June. Small Girls and Jack in the Box decided to strengthen the connection between the food, soft drink and boy band by offering a free medium Sprite to anyone who used the code ANDSPRITE on an in-app purchase July 1.
“This was one of the ideas that we determined would be feasible in terms of digital capabilities on the Jack in the Box app with such a quick turnaround needed, but we also needed to connect internally with the Jack in the Box social media team [in order to] just make sure that the messaging was aligned and provide direction,” said Blair.
The creatives drafted the tweets for the Jack in the Box Twitter handle. A June 27tweet used the phrase “my bias,” which is how fans often describe their favorite member of a boy band.
I knew J-Hope was my bias for a reason...can't believe he wrote an album in my honor— Jack in the Box (@JackBox) June 27, 2022
On June 29, the chain tweeted about the promotion.
A retweet stated, “Army’s in the Jack in the Box drive thru tomorrow,” and featured a video of fans shrieking in delight inside what appears to be a restaurant.
The campaign also sparked user-generated content on TikTok.
“In my professional Army opinion, whoever is running the promotions at Jack in the Box is definitely a real Army because I feel like you have to be a real Army in order to know about ‘And Sprite,’” one fan said on TikTok.
“We had user-generated content that garnered over 1 million views on TikTok talking about our campaign and just expressing love for the Jack in the Box brand for doing a campaign with such a knowing wink to the community and making them feel seen and heard,” said Blair.
In addition, the Jack in the Box tweets also received more than 560,000 likes on Twitter and 75,000 retweets, according to Small Girls.
Small Girls PR could not share how many consumers took Jack in the Box up on this promotion.
“This quick turnaround PR-first campaign was intended to drive buzz, social chatter and community with K-Pop fans timed to the serendipitous naming of J-Hope’s album,” said Mijal Tenenbaum, an account supervisor at Small Girls PR. “The intent was to drive brand awareness and cultural conversation, with sales a secondary success metric.”