Why Thomas Created the Rolling Toaster Tour

Why Thomas Created the Rolling Toaster Tour

The best way to engage your customers is to interact with them live and in-person because this encourages them to participate with you and your brand in whatever you are offering. This type of marketing is often called experiential marketing, engagement marketing, event marketing, ground marketing, or live marketing. Experiential marketing helps create a closer bond between you and your customers, which is a great way to build brand loyalty and a lifelong following.

How Thomas' Developed a Unique Interactive Breakfast Campaign Unlike Anything Before

Thomas', makers of some of the most popular bagels, English muffins and other fine products, came up with a unique way to get up close and personal with as many people as possible.  And they did this by hitting the streets with a truck and trailer, but not just any truck and trailer, a rolling toaster truck and trailer to be exact.

The Thomas' Rolling Toaster Tour Cross Country Marketing Campaign

Talk about experiential marketing at its best. Thomas' has taken this interactive marketing technique to new heights. They fully customized a trailer that was designed to look like a toaster with a huge bagel and English muffin sticking out of the top. So there was no question about who this was or what they were offering.

Thomas' called this event their "Breakfast Like No Other" tour and it was an instant phenomenon. People all over the country flocked to their trailer when it rolled into town. But then Thomas' took their marketing a few steps further which added a viral element to their efforts.  

What Thomas' Did to Create Excitement, Encourage Engagement and Cause Their Efforts to Go Viral

Obviously, Thomas' Rolling Toaster Tour was a live event that stretched across the country. But how they engaged their customers at each stop was really what skyrocketed their efforts into a marketing sensation.

  • Customers were able to order freshly made breakfast sandwiches created by the resident chef.
  • While waiting for their order, customers were invited to walk into the giant toaster to take selfies in front of a seven-foot tall English muffin statue. Which was a great tactic for getting their message to go viral.
  • Then they were offered a turn at a toaster-themed game that awarded prizes to the winners who then again took selfies of their winnings.
  • Once receiving their freshly made breakfast sandwiches, customers were encouraged to eat at one of Thomas' custom designed tables that were built to look like stacks of English muffins and bagels.
  • After the meal, Thomas' provided some fun outdoor games such as a Ring Toss, some Cornhole, and KanJam for their customers to enjoy.

The Secret Sauce Thomas' Used to Kickoff Their Tour

To kickoff the tour Thomas' held a special free sampling event at Santa Monica Place to celebrate National Bagel Day. This allowed their customers to be among the first to try their new limited edition Lemon Blueberry flavor that was only offered for six weeks. Then they donated over 2,000 packages of bagels to the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank.

What Thomas' Did That Made This Campaign So Successful

Thomas' made this a memorable interactive experience that no one is likely to forget. And they did this by thinking outside the box, so to speak. They came up with a unique idea for their marketing campaign. Then they continued to drill down their ideas to further ensure its success, as well as turn it into a viral sensation which is ultimately free advertising and unlimited brand exposure. And so much more!

This is the beauty of hosting a live event, one that allows you to get up close and personal with your customers. This is also what helps create loyal, lifetime followers of your brand. It is all about the experience and making your customer feel special and appreciated. If you haven't tried hosting a live event to build your brand and your customer base, you are definitely leaving money on the table. 

Why MorningStar Farms Created the "Way to Veg" Sampling Tour


When you are a food company like MorningStar Farms, your main goal is to get people to try your vegetable based foods so they will know that healthy can taste good. Well, that’s exactly what they did this summer at the “Way to Veg” experiential marketing tour of the U.S.  Designed to engage current customers as well as to introduce their products to new ones, the “Way to Veg” marketing venture was a successful summer sampling tour loaded with good food, health information, and fun experiences. Experiential marketing, which can be described as a marketing message you can feel, touch, or view in a particular space, is seeing a rise in recent years. Companies and brand ambassadors are looking for fun and unique ways to engage consumers in hopes of making their brands stand out. MorningStar Farms hit a home run with their “Way to Veg” food truck tour and introduced people to a healthy and delicious option.

The marketing venture began in Telluride, Colorado in May at the Mountain Film Festival. The eye catching green, retrofitted MorningStar Farms branded Flying Cloud Airstream was on a mission. Fully equipped with a working kitchen, a freezer, and plenty of room to work, their goal was to set out on a summer sampling tour America would not soon forget!

“There’s a growing openness around eating veggie protein and the MorningStar Farms tour is designed to give people experiences grounded in the versatility and flavors of their food,” said director, brand and innovation marketing at Kellogg’s Frozen Veggie Foods Todd Smith. “The more the brand can provide opportunities for consumers to try recipes with MorningStar Farms veggie protein, the more approachable and accessible it feels to everyone.”

Owned by Kelloggs, the vegetable based brand MorningStar Farms created this interactive and informative experiential marketing tour to introduce folks to the brand itself and its delicious vegetable based food offerings like their Thai Curry Bowls, Veggie Burgers, and other healthy meals. The food truck experience allowed attendees to try delicious foods with a chef demonstration, participate in educational games, and even watch a trailer for their documentary series, “The Veg Effect,” that shows how consumers can easily incorporate more healthy vegetables into their daily diets.

The MorningStar Farms “Way to Veg” food truck offered a variety of experiences designed to introduce consumers to their products and engage them. Armed with a freezer filled with prizes and products, attendees learned that eating more vegetables was an easy and healthy alternative by dining on chef-prepared menu items, listening to MorningStar Farms brand ambassadors teach about “veggie cuisine”, and walking through a “Vegecation” game about vegetables and their value in our diets. Happy participants were awarded prizes to encourage healthy eating such as water bottles, vegetable peelers, and more.

The fun and informative summer tour that began in May in Colorado included stops at popular festivals throughout the United States and ended in September in Los Angeles.

The goal of the summer road tour by MorningStar Farms was to create a closer bond between the consumer and their healthy veggie brand by immersing the consumer in a fun and memorable experience. When this happens and folks have a positive experience, they are likely to associate those emotions with the MorningStar Farms brand, which is crucial to the success of the company.

Lolë Sets Out to Create an Impactful Yogi Experience

Getting people into your product sometimes takes making a big show out of it. When done correctly, this gives thousands a chance to join in directly, while others get to feel like they're part of the action thanks to excellent camera work. Still others will find out about it because the "big show" was so big that it made it to television news. One brand that knows all about this is Lolë. It didn't run just one show, but instead, celebrated Yoga Week with 60 massive worldwide yoga sessions that included an average of 3,000 participants each. After that, it put the tour on the road and hit some key international cities. Needless to say, this made a giant splash across the world by engaging people – and media - in all of those places.

These weren't just regular yoga sessions that happened to be sponsored by Lolë. Instead, they were part of the Lolë White Tour, which was set up to be visually distinctive right from the start. At these events, all of the participants were asked to wear white. Officially, this is to symbolize peace. From a marketing perspective, of course, it makes the event unmistakable. A sea of people wearing white stands out both live and on TV. The company also handed out yellow yoga mats, so the color coordination continues all the way to the floor.

Of course, there is a good reason that Lolë chose yoga as the theme for its extravaganzas: One of the company's biggest product lines is yoga clothing. Plenty of white yoga outfits are for sale on their site so that those who get excited by the White Tour can get their own. Hosting giant yoga events also promotes yoga in general and makes people want to join in.

This is just one of the latest examples of what has come to be called experiential marketing. With this form of marketing, people don't just watch ads or see pictures of products. Instead, they join in on big, impactful events set up by the marketing company. Participants can number in the thousands, tens of thousands, or even more. This makes it so that a serious number of people are directly exposed to the brand, product, and the events themselves. From there, word-of-mouth will carry the marketing impact even further.

If your company is looking for a venue for its own experiential marketing extravaganza, check out Soho Studios in Miami, Florida. Our multiple event spaces are perfect for big events of various sizes, so you can be sure that you can fit a huge crowd inside. Whether you're planning one event or a multi-venue tour, make sure one of your stops is at Soho Studios!