BBDO: Hardee’s Love-in

BBDO South’s most elaborate campaign to date for its Hardee’s Restaurants Southeast franchise group is a collection of quirky tributes to the fast-food chain’s passion for its products.
BBDO South’s mission was to beef up the client’s lunch and dinner sales, said the Atlanta agency’s president, chief executive officer and regional creative chairman, Larry Tolpin. One way of accomplishing that, Tolpin said, is to show Hardee’s staffers as “food fanatics.”
The result is a series of 12 television commercials featuring employees talking about their love for the food they prepare. In “Chicken” (shown), a zealous Hardee’s worker learns from “Jimmy the Chicken Master,” who reveals the secrets of poultry success.
In other spots, Hardee’s staffers perform jumping jacks to limber up for the lunch rush, and a new grill worker stands in awe of his predecessor’s apron, which has been mounted and framed.
The line “And you thought we only knew breakfast” appears on-screen at the end of each spot.
Were the tongue-in-cheek concepts a tough sell to client Flagstar, the Spartanburg, S.C., company that owns 600-plus Hardee’s Restaurants throughout the Southeast? No, Tolpin said, because “every fast-food client loves to show the food.”
TV, radio and outdoor broke in mid-July in Southeast spot markets. The effort is the first Hardee’s campaign since Tolpin took the reins of BBDO South late last fall.
The Pearlstein Group in Los Angeles handles Hardee’s national advertising.