Kentucky Fried Chicken recently released an ad for their new BBQ slow-cooked pulled- chicken sandwich. However, the 60 second ad not only completely missed the mark, but it also took about 56 seconds too long to get to the point. BBH London released this 60-second “Bus” spot for their sandwich, which focuses on southern Americana and nostalgia. The first 53 seconds of the ad focuses on a flashback, where an older man tells the story of how his brother used to ride a bus everyday in order to gain the attention of a beautiful girl. He says, “For months he rode that bus until the time was right, but the funny thing is, that girl lived way past our house. So every night he had to walk five miles home. To get something special takes time, I guess.” I have absolutely no idea how this commercial correlates with slow-cooked pulled-chicken but for some reason attempting to date a girl and cooking meat are on in the same.
Personally, I love nostalgia commercials; I look forward to Chrysler’s Super Bowl commercial every year and the flashbacks of Detroit continuously bring the tears. I can appreciate that KFC tried to play up Americana, the past and the idea that “good things come to those who wait” but by the end of the commercial, I cared more about the relationship between these two than the sandwich. In fact, I wanted nothing to do with the sandwich because they took the majority of the commercial and used it as a mini-trailer for a love story that I’ll never know the ending to. Simultaneously, this type of advertising is somewhat unconventional for the food chain and therefore doesn’t seem to fit with the associations surrounding them.
AdWeek voted this their spot of the day though, so maybe I’m completely wrong in my thinking. Regardless, when a commercial ends up reeling my into their story line but not convincing me to buy their product, I feel like it wasn’t successful. It also doesn’t help that the product wasn’t even acknowledged until the last 6 seconds of the spot. In my mind, just because you can run a 60 second spot, doesn’t mean you should. By the middle of the commercial, I was losing interest and by the end, I had completely forgotten that this was for KFC. While it was a quaint idea to address Americana and the south, considering the sell fried chicken, they should probably try and take a different route for their next go round. I’m also not incredibly sure that nostalgic Americana would sell incredibly well in London, or that they’d be able to relate to it at all.
Gianatasio, David. Ad of the Day: KFC Takes a Long Ride in the Slowest-Cooked Fast-Food Ad Ever, BBH takes its time. Ad Week. Retrieved March 31, 2014, from http://www.adweek.com/news/advertising-branding/ad-day-kfc-takes-long-ride-slowest-cooked-fast-food-ad-ever-156655.