KFC is experiencing what can only be described as Hurricane Oprah. The identity-challenged brand has re-launched its grilled chicken product, which didn’t sell too well a few years ago (“Rotisserie Gold,” anyone?) by using Oprah as its pitch person, offering a coupon for a free 2-piece meal on its website. The deal runs through May 19th (but it is not redeemable on Mothers Day) and has already overwhelmed the fast feeder. Restaurants were not prepared for the onslaught and have had to turn away scores of customers. Ouch. Will the Yum Brands-owned chain be able to maintain the hype once the campaign is over? Stay tuned.
McDonald’s has launched its ad blitz for the McCafe line of gourmet coffees. As I’ve already said, I think this venture will be a huge McFlop for the fast feeder and the latest spot proves it. I get their point. Really, I do. They’re trying to show how wrapping one’s swine flu-infested paws around a McCafe can elevate even the most mundane of experiences, such as cubicle-dwelling at work. However, I am a firm believer that iconic brands should stick to what they’re known for, especially in today’s economy, where brand loyalty is key.
The Shudder Heard Round the Ad World
If ever there was a time when I questioned my decision to become a writer, this would be it. Work is scarce and I’m constantly bombarded by opportunities to become one of those annoying people who hand out samples in front of Walmart, so now is the time for action. Enter Lawson Clarke. The former Arnold creative has unleashed his own site on the unsuspecting public to showcase both his work and his sense of humor. Inspired by Burt Reynolds (and, frankly, who isn’t?), the hirsute Clarke lounges nude on a bearskin rug, naughty parts cleverly concealed by a well-placed TV showing a shot of the White House and playing the national anthem. I’m not sure what else is on the site because I was entranced by the waving American flag, but give it a look, if you dare.
Riddle Me This
In a massive PR campaign, former NFL star Michael Vick is attempting to rehab his image in the wake of the dogfighting scandal. He has even gone so far as to discuss endorsing animal rights group PETA in an attempt to get in the public’s good graces. So, here’s my question: how credible of a spokesman is Michael Vick expected to be against animal cruelty? Seriously.
Keepin’ It Real
It’s no secret – I’m a huge fan of grassroots marketing and, for that reason, Crimson Cup is my new purveyor of choice of my favorite legal drug – coffee. I recently had the privilege of attending my first Coffee Cuppers Club meeting, of which I learned via twitter. In addition to slurping coffee grounds and meeting new people, I also got to meet one of the roast masters and learn about what makes a good cup of coffee. No pressure and no sales tactics, just an enjoyable afternoon that helped me put a face to the brand and personally identify with it. Cheers!