Franchise/Restaurant Advertising


Strategic Partnerships: The Saucony x Dunkin’ Running Shoe Is A Fun, Targeted Product For Runners And New Englanders

March 25, 2019 Sarah Cavill

The Boston Marathon Dunkin Donuts running shoe

The Boston Marathon is just weeks away, but there’s still time to get your Dunkin’ themed sneakers! For the second year in a row, Dunkin’ and Saucony have teamed up to release a novelty sneaker sporting the Dunkin’ colors in a classic running shoe package.

New Englanders Love Their Dunkin,’ Making The Saucony x Dunkin’ Collaboration A Natural Fit

Boston-based Dunkin’ is very popular with New Englanders, so a strategic partnership that includes the Boston Marathon is a smart strategy for Dunkin’ and Saucony, also headquartered in Massachusetts. The Saucony Instagram feed already has fans clamoring for the sneaker release. And there’s a kid’s version of the donut-themed shoe too. (There is also a t-shirt for those interested in head-to-toe Dunkin’ gear.)

“The new Saucony x Dunkin’ Kinvara 10 represents the speed for which our brand is recognized and the deep Boston heritage and support for marathoners that we share with Saucony,” said Justin Unger, Director of Strategic Partnerships at Dunkin’ Brands

Dunkin’ Also Introduced Special Perks For Their Rewards Members During The Week Of The Marathon

The Boston Marathon Dunkin Donuts running shoe

Dunkin’s affection for the Boston Marathon is also extending to their DD Perks Rewards members, who will earn extra points in select New England cities when they use Dunkin’s On-The-Go mobile ordering to get their daily cups of joe. This isn’t the first time Dunkin’ has enticed New Englanders by appealing to their love of sports. Their “Pats win, you win” offer celebrated Patriots victories and number 87 Rob Gronkowski by offering 87-cent coffees to rewards members the day after Pats victories. Alas, after giving away 2.25 million 87-cent coffees, Dunkin’ discontinued the promotion.

Saucony Previously Partnered With Brands To Create Special Edition Running Shoes

Saucony isn’t just bonding with Dunkin.’ The sports brand regularly partners with other brands for cool sneakers and strategic promotions. Last fall, Saucony released a pink sneaker in support of the Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation to support breast cancer research and donated 20% of sales. The Boston Marathon also isn’t Saucony’s first marathon. Last year, the sneaker brand released a special edition Chicago Marathon running shoe.

Marathon Branding Isn’t Just For Sneakers

Saucony and Dunkin’ aren’t the only brands targeting the marathon demographic. Adidas has long created the jacket marathon runners get to wear around town after they finish the race, and The Boston Beer Company created the 26.2 Brew from their new brewery Marathon Brewing. It’s a beer made just for runners: low calorie and brewed with Himalayan sea salt to restore electrolytes.

Strategic partnerships can be a fun way to generate excitement around an event or create awareness for multiple brands or products. When strategically targeted and well aligned with the needs of specific consumers, the partnerships leverage support across brands to drive success.

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About the Author

Sarah Cavill

With more than 20 years of writing, editing and reporting experience, Sarah Cavill brings to Digital Media Solutions (DMS) a fine-tuned and diverse set of skills. Her work has been featured in notable publications including The Daily Muse, CBS Local, Techlicious and Glamour magazine. Sarah has a passion for current events and the deep-dive research that goes into the content development and brand identity of DMS Insights. In her role as Associate Content Manager, Sarah contributes to the pitching, researching and writing of multiple stories published each week surrounding digital and performance marketing innovations in pop culture, news, social media, branding and advertising.

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