This post is part of the Reporter's Notebook blog.
Sonic Corp. for one day only will be offering fans at the Coachella festival a square deal via the popular photo-sharing platform Instagram.
Oklahoma City-based Sonic has partnered with Christine Flynn, executive chef at Toronto’s iQ Food Co. who posts on Instagram as @ChefJacquesLaMerde, to dress up its new line of Creamery Shakes to be ordered through the app on April 16 at Coachella, the music festival in Indio, Calif.
“The Sonic Square Shake will be entirely square, perfect for photographing and sharing, complete with a square cup and a square straw,” the company said.
Coachella attendees at the Base Camp festival grounds will be able to order the shakes through Instagram’s “Shop Now” geo-targeted sponsored ads.
“Samplers are then encouraged to share their Square Shakes on Instagram with the hashtag #SquareShake, thus completing the Insta-circle,” the company said. A spokesman said the shakes will be served in square containers to make them fit the generally square Instagram format, which is a Facebook-owned platform that has a large audience among young people.
Todd Smith, Sonic president and chief marketing officer, said in a statement that “We’ve seen a 72 percent growth in Instagram since last September, and partnering with the social platform and @ChefJacqueslaMerde to develop the world’s first shake designed for Instagram is another innovative step forward in our social presence and strategy.”
As of April 4, Sonic had about 118,000 followers of its Instagram account.
The new Creamery Shakes includes such flavors as Vanilla Bean, Buttered Toffee, Dark Chocolate, Bourbon Brown Sugar, Dulce De Leche and Wildberry & Lavender.
Sonic is also promoting the Square Shakes on YouTube.
In 2014, Sonic promoted a “mystery disappearing slush” flavor on the youth-oriented Snapchat app.
Sonic has 3,500 drive-ins nationally.