Convenience store chain 7-Eleven has declared July 11 (7-11) "7-Eleven Day," a day with free frozen Slurpee drinks and digital content that conveniently coincides with the brand's birthday.
To celebrate its 86th year in 2013, 7-Eleven says it has choreographed a "super-cool celebration" including an online dance party, which has a dedicated page on its website. It contains videos as well as downloadable, printable content.
"To celebrate means to dance, and to celebrate free Slurpee drinks means to Slurpee dance," 7-Eleven says.
As a means to that end, it has enlisted Nathan Barnatt, a performer it calls a "YouTube dancing phenom," to create his own version of the Slurpee Dance.
Danielle Ivey, senior manager of digital marketing at 7-Eleven, says the dance shows viewers the experience of drinking a Slurpee.
As of Wednesday, Barnatt's Slurpee Dance video had 63,000 views:
It was posted June 20.
"We get really good user-generated content...[like] fun images of the Slurpee -- not just the cup, but [consumers] show their Slurpee tongues and are just cooky and crazy in nature," Ivey says. "Every year, we think about how to make it bigger, better and different and because there's so much [user-generated content for 7-Eleven Day], we went with a dance party theme."
Fans are encouraged to download the Slurpee Dance theme song from the website and follow Barnatt's lead or make up their own Slurpee Dance moves and post them to 7-Eleven's Facebook page or on Twitter, YouTube, or Vine with the tag @slurpee #slurpeedance. Fans are also encouraged to use Vimeo and Tumblr.
In addition to video content, the Dance Party site includes downloadable PDFs that can be printed out to enhance consumers' 7-Eleven Day celebrations. That includes party favors like tiny party hats and assorted bows and bands, as well as Pam the Motivational Chinchilla, which, as the name implies, is a printable animal with positive messages.
"Those needing a little extra motivation to get their groove on can download Pam the Motivational Chinchilla with four affirming phrases," the brand says. "Because everyone needs a little encouragement, especially from a cute, fuzzy animal."
7-Eleven calls Pam "your life coach, sensei and not-so-secret admirer rolled into one."
Her motivational phrases include "Work it girl" and "Follow your dreams."
Ivey says 7-Eleven's target audience is "the kid in everyone."
7-Eleven encourages fans to download the 7-Eleven app from the iTunes store or Google Play to take advantage of its #Awesummer deals. According to the brand, that includes coupons for free merchandise like Slurpees and Snickers Ice Cream Bars.
7-Eleven says more than 40 percent of all Slurpees are sold during June, July, and August. The brand also says it sells enough Slurpee drinks each year to fill 44 Olympic swimming pools. The Slurpee was first introduced 47 years ago.
7-Eleven has 2.9 million likes on Facebook and 32,000 followers on Twitter.
It is using the hashtags #SlurpeeDance and #7ElevenDay to promote the Dance Party online.
In addition, as of Wednesday, 14,000 invitees had responded yes to the 7-Eleven Day Dance Party event on Facebook.
Since 2002, 7-Eleven has celebrated its birthday on July 11 by hosting birthday parties with free Slurpees. Free 12-ounce Slurpees are available July 11 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. local time at participating stores.
Based in Dallas, 7-Eleven says it operates, franchises, or licenses more than 10,100 stores in North America and more than 50,700 stores worldwide.
Last Week to Save on SES London Tickets!
SES London takes place February 10-13, 2014. Learn to engage customers and increase ROI by distributing your online marketing efforts across paid, owned & earned media. Join the leaders of today's digital marketing & advertising industry. Find out more ››
*Saver Rates expire this Friday, Dec 13.
Lisa Lacy is senior staff writer at ClickZ. In addition to ClickZ, her work has appeared in The Huffington Post, The Luxury Spot, LearnVest, MarthaStewart.com, GoodHousekeeping.com, amNewYork, and The Wall Street Journal. She's a graduate of Columbia's School of Journalism.