CSD’s sixth annual social media review focuses on trends and best practices in the year ahead and c-store retailers making strides on social platforms.

Best Engagement with a Series of Single Promotions
Winner: Parker’s
Parker’s used a range of creative promotions to engage with fans. Here are a few.

Its March Madness promotion included all Parker’s-produced food and drink items facing off for each bracket. FB fans used reaction buttons (heart or thumbs up) to vote.

“It’s easier to vote with a reaction button and you get more interaction that way,” said Jillian Stafford, who handles social media for Parker’s, which operates 51 c-stores in Georgia and South Carolina. “Page posts that have a lot of reactions trend higher in the algorithm, therefore increasing the exposure of each voting post.”

Another FB promotion that thrilled fans featured a horse who loves the chain’s signature Chewy Ice and sweet tea. The horse works at a nonprofit organization that provides equine therapy to disabled children and adults and the post boosted awareness about both Parker’s products and the equine therapy initiative.

In another unique post, Parker’s celebrated the solar eclipse with a video showing a moon pie moving across a bag of sun chips.

When Hurricane Irma came barreling into the chain’s area in September, Parker’s posted videos to FB to show customers it was there for them. Twice daily the chain updated customers on which stores were open as staff had to consolidate at specific stores.

On Veterans Day, Parker’s again connected with its community by featuring its employees who have served the country. Parker’s recently entertained fans on FB with its Very Merry Gas Giveaway, in which company mascot Chewy surprised customers with a free tank of gas.