Sunday, September 02, 2007

Marketing malpractice

The Wall Street Journal recently ran an article on the troubles at Wendy’s.

How Wendy's Faltered, Opening Way to Buyout
The latest wave of TV ads for Wendy’s leave me scratching my head. The slacker/stoner dude in red pigtails looks like he belongs in a Saturday Night Live parody of Wendy’s, not in a real commercial. There is smart edgy and then there is stupid and pointless pretending to be edgy. Apparently, the people at Wendy’s and at Saatchi and Saatchi cannot distinguish the two.

The commercials are more than bad. They consciously mock the pillars of the Wendy’s consumer image. Hence, they undermine the brand.

The mind boggles. Companies spend millions to build a brand. Then there is Wendy’s which spends millions to destroy a brand that was cultivated over thirty years.

The CEO is now “embattled”. Big surprise. You have to wonder about her leadership ability and basic people skills. What kind of idiot approves an ad campaign that mocks a family member of the beloved founder? A family member, moreover, that the company is named after.

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