Celebrity endorsements are nothing new. According to the American Intellectual Property Law Association, the first example of fame being used to sell wares dates back to the 1700s when the Wedgewood Porcelain Company used royal endorsement to sell plates. And since celebrity endorsements have become common, developing a brand without one is impressive (we tend to like them even when couples are odd). Such has been the case for Jersey Mike’s so far. The sandwich chain tries to grow even more with the help of Danny Devito.
Why Jersey Mike’s Wants a Celebrity Endorsement
In the past, Jersey Mike’s has relied on its appeal to all, focusing its advertising and marketing on endearing customers to the people making the sandwiches and creating a personal connection to the brand. This was accompanied by a push for the company to make regular donations to local charities. The idea was to emulate the “local sub shop” feel that Mike’s Subs, Jersey Mike’s original location, had from the start.
“A Sub Above” has been the company’s slogan for years, with advertisements and packaging share messages like:
A sub should be a measure of the people who made it and the ingredients they made it with. Every sub should be something real. True to its deli roots, and true to its community roots too.
In a way, that first mention of fame still fits that ideal. According to QSR magazineDanny Devito grew up on the streets from the original sub-boutique which opened in 1956, when he was just 12 years old. Jersey Mike Marketing Director Rich Hope told Franchise Times that the sandwich chain avoided celebrity relationships in the past due to Subway’s emphasis on recruiting professional athletes for its spots. But the perfect storm of the chain’s growing footprint and Devito’s genuine love for sandwiches caused the company to shift gears.
The new spots have been introduced for the 2022-23 college football season, targeting the hookers among us. Along with the new spokesperson and a new set of ads, a new tagline was added: “It’s a Jersey Mike thing”. As the chain grows, their new management seems to be saying “if you know, you know”, and soon even more people will be part of the special club that recognizes Jersey Mike’s as the superior sub. Hopefully the rapid growth and new spotlight of a celebrity endorsement doesn’t spoil the quality of the brand, and Jersey Mike’s can continue to be “A Sub Above.”