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The KFC chicken crisis caused by DHL’s delivery failures could have been disastrous, but a rapid strategic response has ensured the brand will benefit long-term from increased awareness and a boost in consumer demand.

KFC Chicken Crisis

What’s in three little letters? Well the short answer is that they may spell out the best bit of marketing of 2018.

In November 2017, when logistics company DHL won the KFC account, it promised to “rewrite the rule book” and “set a new benchmark” for delivering chicken. Having finally taken over the account earlier this month it appears both objectives have been achieved, but perhaps not in the manner KFC or its new partner might have hoped.

It quickly became apparent that DHL was catastrophically ill-prepared to serve its new client. Chicken from KFC’s suppliers began to pile up on the side of the road and, with literally nothing to cook or sell, most of the chain’s 870 British outlets were forced to close their doors.

Cue a series of troubling street-level interviews in which people who clearly did not need any more fried chicken complained bitterly about being unable to get their buckets of KFC. Many were so bereft they resorted to calling 999 to fix the ’emergency’ and several police forces took to social media to demand that residents stop calling them about the situation.

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The food delivery brand says the campaign is a long-term proposition as it looks to raise awareness of the service and get people to use it more often.

deliveroo delivery food

Deliveroo is launching a new global brand campaign as it looks to showcase the breadth of food available on its service and get people using it more often.

Launching today (21 February), the ‘Eat More Amazing’ campaign will feature traditional takeaway foods such as curry and pizza alongside more unconventional offerings such as poke, a type of Hawaiian salad, and sushi, as well as healthier options. Deliveroo hopes this will be the start of a long-term proposition that will encourage people to “eat more amazing at every food occasion”.

The creative, which was designed in-house, makes more prominent use of Deliveroobrand cues including its signature colour, teal. Typography and copy have also been softened and given an onomatopoeic twist, which Deliveroo hopes will get across its “fun brand personality”.

The campaign will run across outdoor, radio, mobile, social, experiential and direct mail, while partners will also promote the positioning. The radio ads are particularly interesting, with Deliveroo running bespoke messages based on the day, weather and location.

Emily Kraftman, head of marketing for the UK and Ireland at Deliveroo, says: “We now have over 15,000 UK partners that span over 80 cuisine types. With Eat More Amazing we wanted to make sure the whole world knows Deliveroo is all about getting your favourite restaurant food delivered when and where you want it.”

The campaign launch comes as Deliveroo battles growing competition in the food delivery market from rivals including Just Eat, UberEats and Amazon Restaurants. According to YouGov BrandIndex, Deliveroo has better brand awareness than offerings from Amazon and Uber but still lags Just Eat and Hungry House.

And it has a job on its hands to improve consumer perceptions following growing concerns about the so-called ‘gig economy’ and Deliveroo’s relationship with its workers. YouGov’s index ranking, which measures a range of metrics including impression, quality and reputation, shows Deliveroo has a score of just -1.4, putting it 42nd on a list of 46 fast food and pub brands and behind all its main competitors.

from Marketing Week:

Chickens? Dancing? A Kentucky-Fried-themed rap? Throw them all together and you’ve got yourself the most complained about ad of 2017.

Of the 30,000 complaints made to the UK’s advertising watchdog, the Advertising Standards Authority, last year, 755 of those were about KFC’s ‘The Whole Chicken’, seeing it top the chart for the second time after its hugely unpopular Zinger Crunch Salad ad received a whopping 1,671 complaints back in 2005 (and where it remained for another nine years).

However, despite concerns that it was disrespectful to chickens and distressing for vegetarians, vegans and children, the ASA ruled it was unlikely the ad would cause distress or serious widespread offence and KFC’s chicken was allowed to waltz away into the sunset (or wherever it was on its way to).

It turns out people aren’t big fans of men dancing in denim hot pants and heels either, with’s ‘strutters and builders’ campaign featuring in the ASA’s top 10 for a third year running.

Again, despite the 455 complaints made, the ASA didn’t think the ad was overtly sexual or possibly homophobic – like many of the complainants did – and let the ‘#epicsquad’ continue to dance their way to cheaper car insurance.

Dove’s controversial breastfeeding ads, which were criticised for using language such as ‘put them away’, received 391 complaints and were pulled by parent company Unilever before the ASA could launch an investigation.

McDonald’s also dodged interrogation and removed its TV ad featuring a boy and his mum talking about his dead father over a Filet-O-Fish, which generated 256 complaints.

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The TV advert, which launches next Monday, across TV, online and cinema continues Coca -Cola’s focus on its healthier options.

Coca-Cola is bringing back its ‘First Tastes’ campaign as part of a renewed push for Coca-Cola Zero Sugar and a wider focus on its healthier drinks as consumers increasingly opt for lower sugar options and with the introduction of the government’s sugar tax imminent.

The campaign, which will launch on Monday (15 January), will be pushed across TV, online and cinema with supporting activity across out-of-home advertising, digital and PR.

The advert, created by McCann EMEA, is a continuation of the brands ‘First Taste’ idea and features a retiree, Mr Hadley, who is given a Coca-Cola Zero Sugar for the first time, which sparks a chain of new firsts. His adventures include confessing his love to Alice, a long-lost crush, getting a tattoo, attending a Pride Parade and crowd-surfing at a festival.

Aedamar Howlett, marketing director at Coca-Cola Great Britain, says: “The campaign brings to life the concept of those ‘bucket list’ moments that universally resonate with people. We want to build on the success we have had to date reminding people of what makes it so special.”

Coca-Cola rebranded Coke Zero to Coke Zero Sugar in April 2016, and it has had an immediate impact. Coke claims sales are on the up, with Coke Zero Sugar its fastest-growing product.

And according to YouGov BrandIndex, consumer perceptions of Coke Zero Sugar have also increased. Its Index score, which includes metrics such as quality, value and satisfaction, has seen a statistically significant increase since the rebrand from -2.6 in April 2016 to 1.5 in January this year.

Its Quality score has also seen a sharp increase from -1.1 to 2 over the same period.

The campaign launch comes as Coca-Cola announces an overhaul of its Diet Coke brand in the US with new packaging and flavors.

from Marketing Week:

With Christmas fast approaching, the current retail climate suggests consumers will be looking for a bargain.

Morrison's Supermarket

John Lewis has already predicted the mood around big ticket items will be subdued for quite some time – suggesting Brits will be less likely to trade up this Christmas.

The reality, according to GfK, is Brits are slightly upping their spend on bigger buys such as electricals, but only because they are borrowing more money on credit cards. It has labeled this trend “worrying” and says rising interest rates and inflation will also dampen the mood among many consumers this Christmas.

Despite this negative backdrop, big four supermarket Morrisons will be taking a lot of positive momentum into the crucial Christmas trading period. Today (2 November) it revealed like-for-like sales rose 2.5% in its third quarter.

Although this is a slower rate of growth than the 2.6% and 3.4% growth it recorded in the previous two quarters, it represents the supermarket’s eighth consecutive quarter of sales growth – a reality far removed from the struggling brand inherited by Morrisons’ CEO David Potts when he took the job in February 2015.

And asked by Marketing Week during a press call whether Christmas 2017 will most benefit discount brands, Potts answered: “Our job is to serve core customers as well as we can whatever the prevailing circumstances are. Equally, everyone is welcome at Morrisons and with our ‘Best’ premium range doubling its sales over the last year – the quality message is now there at the business.

“This Christmas we will be holding the prices of 100 of the key festive items – from potatoes to mince pies – so customers will need to decide [if they want to spend more somewhere else] as ultimately everyone has to eat.

“There’s every chance Brits will dial down on eating out and come to Morrisons instead so there’s plenty to look forward to. We’re in better shape this year with more stock in store and more research completed. We feel more chipper going into Christmas.”

Morrisons is trying to tread the line between low prices and high quality

Under Potts, Morrisons has repeatedly talked up its brand positioning as a shop keeper and as a food maker, with it looking to find the middle ground between similar prices to the German discounters Aldi and Lidl as well as high food quality perceptions.

Reflecting on the year, Potts says the brand has most benefitted from word of mouth buzz due to the improvements it has made to its core offer.

He concluded: “The Most important thing we have done with our brand is listen hard to customers and colleagues, and wherever possible respond quickly to their concerns.

“That has led to priorities within the business around competitiveness increase and allowed us to serve customers better. There’s now great value on the shelves and great work completed on our own brand around both notching up quality and notching down pricing combined. All of this combined with cleaner stores has made the shopping trip better than it was and our brand stronger in the market.”

from Marketing Week: