Power Rankings

Fast Food Marketing Power Rankings: July, 2011 edition

It’s time for the summer edition of the marketing power rankings. This is where I judge the effectiveness of their advertising campaigns, and nothing to do with the food itself. Previous editions can be found here and here. You can see my disclaimer in the former. Because it is the summertime , I will factor in the movie blockbuster tie-ins as well. I can only judge what I’ve seen and heard, so some have fallen off the charts.

  1. McDonald’s – The stop-motion animation to promote their mango products is quite eye-catching. It’s reminiscent of Peter Gabriel‘s “Sledgehammer.
  2. Wendy’s – I’m not particularly found of the “Dear Wendy” gimmick, but I do like how they made a mini-beach in Denver, CO.
  3. Taco Bell – Americans can view the XXL Grilled Stuffed Burrito commercial as making fun of clueless foreigners. Foreigners can see this as making fun of obese Americans. It’s a win-win situation!
  4. KFC – This season the Yum! Brands batted .667. Like Meat Loaf once sang, “Two out of three ain’t bad.”
  5. Carl’s Jr / Hardee’s – A mouthless robot trying to eat a chicken sandwich is comedy GOLD! It’s the funniest commercial I’ve seen in a while.
  6. Subway – Wait, you mean you have pulled pork AND a $5 footlong of the month? Oh, that’s good. Less Jared. Less B-list athletes. Less Green Lantern. More BBQ pork.
  7. Dunkin’ Donuts – Staging a live-action Looney Tunes bit to promote Captain America. Too bad they don’t have a Mountain Dew Baja Blast Coolata. I would order one right now if they had that.
  8. Domino’s – They continue their image makeover. Their CEO is charismatic to pull it off.
  9. Nathan’s – This is solely based on the Fourth of July hot dog eating contest. So this is brought to you thanks to ESPN and Major League Eating. This is also my baseline for my rankings.
  10. Papa John’s  – If anyone should be pushing for an end to the NFL lockout, it’s “Papa” John himself.
  11. Arby’s – Interrupting the song midway through their ad was clever. Now if they can stop the rest of the song. It is getting tiresome quickly.
  12. Dave & Busters – The game room is fun until someone points out how the machines cheat. It’s something you never see in their commercials.
  13. IHOP – I have to give credit for trying to make a pancake place quasi-interesting. It’s not easy.
  14. Pizza Hut – Remember what I said about YUM! at #4? Well, this is the one-out-of-three.
  15. Popeye’s –  I’m disappointed they did not press the initiative. The ground they gained on KFC has been given right back. Maybe because they realize their seafood offerings really do stink.
  16. Dairy Queen – This is the time of year to promote their Blizzards.
  17. Applebees – Rewarded for not being TGIF.
  18. Denny’s – still trailing IHOP.
  19. White Castle – I was going to rant about how much the price of sliders have quietly gone up. But compared to the price of a hamburger at the other fast food places, the price is about the same rate as it has been in the past. Prices have gone up across the board.
  20. TGIFriday’s – Penalized for its association with the Kevin James movie Zookeeper.
  21. Cici’s  – They are not making me forget just how awful their pizza really is.
  22. Burger King – The BK closest to me is now promoting on their billboard how you can now have burgers for breakfast. While other restaurants brag about having breakfast at any hour (IHOP, Jack in the Box), leave it to BK to do the reverse. I’m hoping Optimus Prime will smash this place.
  23. Sonic – I take it back. I hope Optimus & co. will smash the folks in the Sonic commercials.
  24. Buffalo Wild Wings – With no basketball, and it’s not certain that we’ll have football, what games will the BWW crew fix this season?
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