Bad ad or bad strategy? Wendy’s just wings it.

In Ad Creative on September 5, 2009 at 9:44 pm

Okay, that’s it. I’ve seen it enough times to annoy me, so I have to comment. I like Wendy’s food. But I find their latest commercial silly and strategically misguided.  The first half of the spot features chicken wings being served at a sports-bar type of establishment. bbq-chickenWendy’s attempts to ridicule the whole scene through a smarmy, overplayed waiter with gleaming teeth carrying a plate of wings to a table. Cartoonish little words and symbols  — representing “flair” — settle onto the plate along the way, jacking its price up into double figures.

Cut to a plain, rather uninspiring shot of Wendy’s wings with their $3.99 price tag. (No flair in that scene, I’ll be the first to admit.)  But here’s my problem, Wendy’s. You’re trying to compare apples and oranges; Mercedes and Chevy; Peoria and Paris.

Let’s talk about that “flair” you so dislike.  Now, “flair” is what servers call the cute  little decorations and adornments they are supposed to display on their shirts and name tags, but you can’t mean that. I can only suspect that by “flair” you mean the fun, the atmosphere, the people–the lively setting that customers are seeking when they visit those restaurants. They don’t go to those places for a quick bite, or to carry out a dozen wings to shovel in their mouths front of their TV sets. They go for the experience. And they know it’s going to cost more than fast food.

And don’t even say it, Wendy’s.  I know you’re trying to distance yourselves with your tag line, but you’re not way better than fast food. You are fast food. Albeit with a flair for thinking pretty highly of  yourselves.


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