Arby’s coupons going mobile

Coupons have long been a part of fast-food chain Arby’s marketing efforts, so it’s no surprise that the brand’s first foray into mobile marketing includes coupons. In a move to reach a younger demographic that does not clip paper coupons, Arby’s has teamed with mobile services firm Cell­fire for a new coupon that gives mobile phone users discounts on Arby’s food.

“Arby’s does a lot of couponing in newspaper and direct mail, so it was a natural transition to do a mobile cou­poning offer,” said Cindy Richardson, VP of company marketing at Arby’s. “We look for alternative media oppor­tunities to reach different audiences and we felt that mobile was the perfect way to reach a younger audience.”

Brent Dusing, CEO of Cellfire, said more than 70% of the Cellfire user base is under 35 years old — a demographic that is less likely to clip paper coupons.

Cellfire’s plan works by having consumers download a Cellfire coupon wallet to their cell phone every two weeks, including coupons for a number of brands such as Arby’s, Hollywood Video and Pete’s Coffee. Users go into participating establishments and flash their mobile coupon at the check out.

Once a coupon is used, it cannot be used again, although many brands release new coupons every couple of weeks to keep consumers coming back.

The Arby’s promotion includes coupons for a free beef and cheddar sandwich, a free Jamocha shake and a free chicken sandwich. According to Richardson, Arby’s will test this cam­paign and see how it goes before doing any more mobile marketing.

“This offering makes it easier for con­sumers to use coupons,” added Dusing. “This allows a consumer to go to any Arby’s, and just use their phone to get an offer.”

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