chew on this

Domino’s Rolls Out Digital Thanks in US, New Logo Beyond US

Posted by Dale Buss on August 6, 2012 11:17 AM

Domino’s Pizza has overhauled everything from its branding to its pizza recipes to its advertising over the last couple of years, and now the biggest pizza deliverer on the globe is pressing change in a number of new ways.

For one thing, Domino’s continues to push as much business as possible to online ordering, a trend that has been overtaking the pizza trade for a while now. This week, digital customers in the US will receive half off on all pizzas ordered at the listed menu price.

Also as part of this promotion, Domino’s is reminding American customers how many options they have for getting their pizza just right. At a time when some other products are getting simpler for ease of manufacturing and to cut costs for brands, Domino’s wants to let pizza eaters know that they could line up their pies more than 34 million different ways.Continue reading...

brands under fire

GLAAD Kiss-In Caps Wild Week for Chick-fil-A

Posted by Dale Buss on August 3, 2012 03:39 PM

The numbers were probably stacked against them from the start, but Friday's protest of Chick-fil-A by GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) didn't turn out nearly as many participants in the planned LGBT "Kiss-in" as the chain was able to generate at former Republican presidential contender Mike Huckabee's nationwide "Appreciation Day" for the restaurant chain on Wednesday.

Or gauging by another measure, by mid-afternoon Friday, nearly 14,000 Facebook users had subscribed to GLAAD's "National Same Sex Kiss Day at Chick-fil-A" event, while some 630,000 subscribed to Wednesday's "appreciation day," according to a report by Politico.com.

And while Politico reported that the "kiss-ins appear to have occurred without incident" in Chick-fil-A restaurants, there was one ugly scene: The exterior of a Chick-fil-A in Torrance, Calif., was defaced with graffiti reading, "Tastes Like Hate."Continue reading...

brands under fire

Chick-fil-A Day Lures Same-Sex Marriage Foes as GLAAD Gears Up Friday Protest

Posted by Mark J. Miller on August 1, 2012 03:12 PM

If Mike Huckabee ever runs for U.S. president again, he’ll be sure to get the Chick-fil-A vote. The former Arkansas governor suggested that consumers go eat at the fast-food chain in order to show their appreciation for the organization’s disdain for same-sex marriage. 

Chick-fil-A pulled in $12.7 million a day in 2011, according to ESPN’s sports business reporter Darren Rovell. And that’s without doing any business on Sundays, since the chain closes down in case its workers want to attend church.

Observers on both sides will be paying close attention to how much traffic and how many dollars Chick-fil-A pulls in today. (According to Huckabee's podcast and BuzzFeed's report, Chick-fil-A restaurants saw line-ups across the country.) But the chain will also get a few customers on Friday as well, CNN reports, when GLAAD is encouraging same-sex couples to visit Chick-fil-A’s across America to protest with a "Kiss Day" public display of affection.Continue reading...

chew on this

Applebee's Now Selling Inflatable You, So Real You Can Sneak Out for Lunch

Posted by Dale Buss on July 26, 2012 12:27 PM

Life-size inflatable dolls can be used for all sorts of things. There's that trick of setting one in the passenger seat of your car to fool cops policing high-occupancy vehicle lanes, of course. And, well, anyway, an unusual new line of blow-up dolls is now being offered by a surprising source: Applebee's, the casual-dining chain.

They're called Lunch Decoys, and they can be propped up at desks and on assembly lines "to trick bosses and coworkers into thinking you're still hard at work while you're actually at Applebee's enjoying the delicious Pick 'N Pair Lunch menu," as a spokesperson put it. "Now Applebee’s not only offers a great lunch menu, but also a foolproof way to slip out of the office and get it." But wait, there's more!Continue reading...

London 2012

London 2012 Watch: McDonald's Touts Team USA Gold Contest With Lolo Jones

Posted by Dale Buss on July 23, 2012 05:39 PM

Just as McDonald's is gearing up its controversial sponsorship of the 2012 Summer Olympics in London that begins this week, the world's biggest fast-food brand is introducing a new US Olympics tie-in marketing program designed to continue to reposition the brand as at least a reasonable alternative for healthful fare in the eyes of American consumers.

"Favorites Under 400 Calories" is a new menu "platform" featuring existing popular food and beverage choices at McDonald's, in an attempt to remind customers that they have plenty of healthful and even diet-friendly choices under the golden arches. Team USA gold medal contenders hurdler Lolo Jones (above) and boxer Marlen Esparza are featured in a new series of commercials supporting the Olympics contest.Continue reading...

social media watch

Study: How McDonald's Masters Engagement on Social Media

Posted by Sheila Shayon on July 18, 2012 01:08 PM

Unmetric, a social marketing benchmarking company, lets brand marketers compare their social media efforts against their competitors. Many of them in the quick-serve restaurant space will be consuming the firm's just released Fast Food Report, detailing social media efforts of the top 16 U.S. fast food chains from January through April 2012.

Beyond "how many followers?" or "how many friends?" Unmetric analyzes which campaigns are working, with whom, and how effectively. The proprietary Unmetric Score, “is a scientific blend of 24 qualitative and quantitative social media metrics, weighted and balanced to produce a single benchmarkable number.”

McDonald’s takes the trophy for the most astute fast food chain in social media, followed closely by Taco Bell, but for growth and conversation in 2012, it’s the McDonald’s vs. Burger King rivalry that stands out.Continue reading...

chew on this

Applebee's, Wendy's Freshen Menus, Stores

Posted by Dale Buss on July 4, 2012 02:02 PM

For Applebee's, the key to accelerating growth may be "fresh" and seasonal entrees. For Wendy's, the path to continuing to compete with Burger King for the No. 2 spot in U.S. fast-food sales may be strewn with bread and buns. Both chains have selected mid-year for significant new pushes behind their brands, their positioning and their products.

Applebee's just launched a new ad campaign, "See You Tomorrow," the first effort by new agency CP+B. It highlights what the chain calls its "culinary credibility" by sharing where its fresh ingredients come from. Ads show Applebee's chefs standing in fields of vegetables and fruits that are part of a new "Fresh Flavors of Summer" menu that includes entrees such as lemon shripm fettucine and garlic rosemary chicken pasta.Continue reading...

brand mascots

Chuck E. Cheese Relaunches From Goofy Cartoon Mascot Into Hip Rocker

Posted by Shirley Brady on July 4, 2012 10:54 AM

Chuck E. Cheese, the namesake mascot (mousecot?) of the pizza restaurant/kids arcade chain that was founded by the founder of Atari, is getting a makeover.

Following a teaser campaign on Facebook, the cartoon-like kid-appealing critter is getting hipper and adding some rock star 'tude (which keeping the purple and green t-shirt) via a national ad campaign in the U.S. that will break on July 5th. The new voice of Chuck also brings rock star cred to the character: Jaret Reddick, the lead singer of Bowling for Soup.

According to comments by CEC Entertainment CMO Scott McDaniel to Screen, the goal of the mascot refresh is to 

"contemporize Chuck E. Cheese in a very respectful and engaging fashion. Chuck E. is the hero at the heart of our restaurants. For the first time in years, we’re changing the way we communicate with our key patrons – kids.” The “Chuck E. Rocks” campaign comprises television, digital and in-store components. Four TV spots, “Belonging,” “Fun,” “Power” and “Birthdays,” each named for something a child experiences at Chuck E. Cheese’s, showcase kids doing what they do best at Chuck E. Cheese’s – having fun."Continue reading...

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