Hot off the grill: Bojangles' debuts emoji app

The iOS keyboard now has hundreds of available emojis, but Bojangles' does not think that's quite enough.

To fill a void where a biscuit emoji could be, the chain launched a "Bomoji" app with more than 30 Emoticons on Thursday on the iOS app store. The chain also hopes to roll it out for Android, though timing is not available yet.

Bomojis from Bojangles
Source: Bojangles

The move is just the latest reflection of fast food's love for all things digital and social media. Earlier this year, burger giant Burger King also made a foray into the emoji world with a Chicken Fries keyboard to highlight the return of the dish, which has been especially popular on social media.

For Bojangles,' the idea came about after it noticed "a large percentage of (its) most loyal fans use emojis as a primary dialect when communicating," said Doug Poppen, the chain's senior director of marketing, during a phone interview.

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He added Millennials, a key target group for restaurants, and Gen Z customers are especially heavy users of the characters.

Some examples included in the batch are riffs off existing emojis, like a fist pump image that is now holding a Bojangles box, or clinking beer glasses that have been turned into sweet tea cups.

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The Bomoji app marks a return to the app store for the chain, which shuttered a previous one that was focused more on entertainment and information rather than the mobile ordering and pay features that restaurants are increasingly launching. Bojangles is also looking to enter that mix in the future.

"We're currently evaluating things like mobile payment," Poppen said.