Strike Through Cancer One Dime at a Time - Jason’s Deli and MD Anderson Cancer Center
Jason’s Deli, a Texas based eatery with 240 locations in 28 states, says it treats employees like family. When Jason’s realized that many of its family of employees were facing cancer, they decided they wanted to make a difference.
In October 2013, they partnered with The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, a nationally recognized cancer center to create Strike Through Cancer One Dime at a Time. The concept was simple: ten cents of each water bottle sold at the delis would be donated to MD Anderson with a goal of $250,000. The deli’s private label water bottles were given new labels, each one featuring a picture and a story of an employee and their family who was touched by cancer (consumers were directed to the campaign’s web page where they could read more).
To launch the campaign, all employees wore brightly colored bandanas with the word “cancer” and a strike through it, each color representing a different cancer. Soon, customers wanted to purchase the bandanas. Jason’s Deli made the bandanas available for sale with proceeds donated to MD Anderson. At the MD Anderson gift shops, both water bottles and bandanas were sold.
As the popularity of the program became apparent, Jason’s created a special healthy salad in collaboration with the cancer center’s registered dieticians and prevention experts that was meant to appear on the menus temporarily. The salad was so popular that it remains on the menu today and a co-branding opportunity was born.
One Dime at a Time was a success on many levels. More than $300,000 was donated to MD Anderson, and the program was renewed for another year. Sale of water bottles increased throughout the year, up to 68 percent. In the first eight months alone, the campaign garnered 5 million impressions through paid and earned media. The campaign drew 9,000 likes and more than 923 shares on Facebook, and more than 2,500 views on YouTube. Jason’s and MD Anderson are working on opening a Jason’s Deli at the Cancer Center and on creating co-branded menu items for patient in-room dining.