At 7-Eleven, Politicking Means Picking Right Coffee Cup

Published in CSP Daily News

Presidential poll is back for 7-Election promo, Onion partnership

DALLAS -- 7-Eleven Inc. has geared up its 7-Election Presidential Coffee Cup Poll. Billed as unabashedly unofficial and unscientific, 7-Election invites customers to vote by selecting specially marked coffee cups, blue for President Barack Obama and red for former Mitt Romney.

7-Eleven's regular "nonpartisan" cups are also available for undecided customers or those who would rather not publicize their presidential preference. Patriotic coffee-drinkers can vote at participating 7-Eleven stores as early and as often as they want in the two months leading up to the national election.

7-Election cups are instantly tabulated at the register when the sale is made. National, state and major market results will be posted daily on www.7-election.com, a website created especially for the coffee-cup poll. Poll tallies will reflect the percentage of candidate cups sold to date, not including 7-Eleven's regular ("undecided") cups. Participating 7-Eleven stores are encouraged to post their stores' latest results at the hot beverage islands.

"Each day, almost 7 million Americans visit our neighborhood stores on their way to work, after school or while they're out and about. Around 1 million of those purchase a cup of

Introducing The Onion's 2012 Election Coverage

7-Eleven coffee," said 7-Eleven president and CEO Joe DePinto. "While we have never billed 7-Election as scientific or statistically valid, it is astounding just how accurate this simple count-the-cups poll has been--election after election. We have had a lot of fun with it, and I hope we have encouraged people how important it is to vote in the real election."

7-Eleven has added several new elements to perk up the company's 2012 campaign including its second annual CofFREE Day, Friday, September 28. As a nod to National Coffee Day (officially on Saturday, September 29), which occurs during the 7-Election campaign, 7-Eleven is encouraging people to stop by stores and vote their choices. Between 6:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m. that day, customers can vote by selecting a free large cup of coffee in their preferred blue or red cup. During that same period, nonpartisan large-size 7-Eleven cups also are available for free. This is the first CofFREE Day held during 7-Election.

New this year, 7-Eleven has partnered with The Onion, a satirical news organization, to help get out the vote. The retailer is sponsoring The Onion's "War for the White House" news coverage, which includes four exclusive news vignettes that can be seen on Onion News and the 7-Election website.

Also, a special "Mobile Oval" political party bus featuring a mini-presidential Oval Office on wheels will be traversing the country from September 28, through Election Day,

November 6. The vehicle will make multiple campaign stops, with the 7-Eleven grassroots team offering free coffee samples, handing out coupons and taking photos of visitors in the Mobile Oval or with their favorite candidate. Tweets from the road will appear on Twitter (#mobileoval), and a map highlighting the bus route will be updated regularly on the 7-Election website.

Other elements of 2012 7-Election include a grassroots-on-wheels campaign. Festooned with backdrops that include life-sized likenesses of each of the two candidates, 7-Eleven sampling buses are serving up both great coffee and photo opportunities with their favorite two-dimensional candidate through Election Day.

7-Eleven customers also will see the return of vanilla-flavored "Purple for the People" Slurpee drinks at participating 7-Eleven stores.

Based in Dallas, 7-Eleven operates, franchises or licenses approximately 9,400 7-Eleven stores in North America. Globally, there are some 47,600 7-Eleven stores in 16 countries. During 2011, 7-Eleven stores worldwide generated total sales close to $76.6 billion.