In the words of the Zac Brown Band, “You know I like my chicken fried.” Boy, do I. This weekend, I ventured back home to Atlanta to celebrate Easter and attend my dad’s surprise 60th birthday party.
Twenty minutes after being back below the Mason-Dixon line, where am I?
I am anxiously awaiting the day Chick-fil-A comes to Boston. Until then, I have resigned to getting my grease fix every time I visit the south. While drinking my Sweet Tea and chowing down on Waffle Fries, I stared at the restaurant’s décor: Cows scribbling the phrase “Eat Mor Chikin.”
Those three words coupled with the three cows reminded me of the brand’s witty out-of-home ads:
Since the age of five, I have been an avid fan of the Chick-fil-A kids meal and the renegade Cows. If you do the math, these entertaining Chick-fil-A Cows are approaching adolescence. In fact, they have been practicing their desperate, self-preserving antics for the past 16 years.
From parachuting into football stadiums and painting billboards with memorable quotes like “Lose That Burger Belly,” their rebellious behavior has propelled the Cows into national brand identities for the Atlanta-based, quick-service restaurant.
In addition to clever roadside billboards, the “Eat Mor Chikin” Cows are the focal point of Chick-fil-A’s in-store, point-of-purchase materials, promotions, radio and TV advertising, and clothing and merchandise sales.
Created by The Richards Group, the “Eat Mor Chikin” campaign was first introduced in 1995 as a three-dimensional billboard concept depicting a black-and-white cow sitting atop the back of another cow painting the words “Eat Mor Chikin” on the billboard.
The ad world recognizes the brilliance of this creative, integrated marketing campaign. The “Eat Mor Chikin” campaign has received the following awards:
- Presented the Silver Lion award for outdoor advertising at the Cannes International Advertising Festival (1997)
- Won a Silver EFFIE award in the Fast Food/Restaurants category for creativity and effectiveness in advertising (1998)
- Inducted into The Outdoor Advertising Association of America’s (OAAA) OBIE Hall of Fame (2006)
- Won America’s most popular advertising icon in a public vote sponsored by Advertising Week (2007)
- Received a Silver EFFIE Award for sustained success in creativity and effectiveness in advertising (2009)
Along with the ad industry’s praise, customers are listening to these humorous bovine suggestions to “Eat Mor Chikin.” Since the campaign debuted, Chick-fil-A sales have increased more from just over $500 million in 1995 to more than $3 billion in 2009.
“This campaign has been more successful than we ever imagined it could be,” said Steve Robinson, Chick-fil-A’s senior vice president of marketing. “The Cows started as part of our advertising campaign, and now they have become part of our passion and our brand.”