Secret Weapon, Jack in the Box Woo Women

LOS ANGELES As Jack in the Box continues efforts to expand beyond a young male consumer, the chain today breaks a regional TV spot introducing its chicken Caesar salad.

Created by independent Secret Weapon Marketing in Santa Monica, Calif., the 30-second spot, “Screwin’ Up,” has a man who calls his girlfriend by the wrong name and is distracted by another woman walking down the street while his steady rattles off names for their future children.

Jack, the chain’s fictional, Ping-Pong ball-headed founder, CEO and spokesman, appears and says, “Screwin’ up with the ladies? Win her back with my new chicken Caesar salad.” The spot then shows the guy noticing his girlfriend’s haircut. She is pleased that he noticed, until he says, “It makes your face look plump.” The ad concludes with the chain’s lettuce-head icon, which is used in its ads for salad items.

“This is a response to what customers are clamoring for,” said Secret Weapon founder and creative director Dick Sittig, referring to the increasing popularity of low-carb and low-calorie eating. “It’s more than just a fad.”

Media spending was undisclosed. Jack in the Box spent $96 million on ads in 2003, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus. Horizon Media in Los Angeles handles the San Diego-based client’s media buying.

Jack in the Box has more than 1,950 restaurants in 17 states, primarily in the West and Southwest.