Chicken + Peanuts = Conversation Starter

While the recipe mentioned in the title might imply that I am looking to cook up a mean batch of Thai chicken, it’s actually two companies adding value to their coupons in the circular from my Sunday Globe.

So how does that start a conversation?

Last week, I blogged on how offline advertisements were being wasted by neglecting to add call outs to the company’s social media assets. While the wife was planning out our strategy to look at some condos and houses on the market, I decided test my rant’s viability in the coupons section. After pouring through the two-inch thick glossy pile of ads, I was left looking at only two that acknowledged their social media presence – Boston Market and Planters – kind of sad knowing that I looked at roughly 200 coupons and was hoping for a better showing than a pair of social media call-outs, but hey Rome wasn’t built in a day.

Now prior to seeing these ads, I had no clue as to the social presence of either of these mega-brands, so let’s give ‘em a look.

Boston Market


Now for starters the offers looked tasty, but the mere buttons noting Twitter and Facebook were kind of frustrating as they made me do some work to get to the chicken joint’s pages. Following the principle of vanity URLs in Facebook, it was pretty easy getting to the company’s page there. The landing page offered some more deals, which is good because it fits the consistency of the callout but also offers information on job openings, a VIP club and store locator. The added benefit is that they call out their catering menu, which could be worthwhile for those office managers looking at a health alternative to Chinese and pizza deliveries.

Since the Facebook search went so well, I figured I would type in http://twitter.com/bostonmarket. Instead of a scrumptious image of chicken staring at me, I saw the blue Twitter bird saying the account has been suspended. Now if I were an average consumer I would end my quest for the page. No worries, Google helped me and the account is http://twitter.com/BostMarket. The account looks fairly active but has only a limited amount to offer. For a brand as large as they are, I expect them to have more to offer. I will give them the benefit of the doubt for a slow embrace by the corporate home office of social media, but the URL is a complete fail. So while the company is heading in the right direction of maximizing their offline real estate, a URL is a must. If it’s too cluttered, simply alternate pages.

Planters


While the guys over at Boston Market wet my appetite, the guys at Planters took it to the house with this ad. Not only does it promote the company’s presence at the Final Four and offer the Facebook logo, but it also gives the URL and lets you know what to expect with Follow Mr. Peanut to the Final Four. How could you not want to check out the fan page of a giant nut with a monocle and top hat? Well those allergic to peanuts have an excuse, but other than that, there is no excuse.

The page offers some pics and thoughts from the mascot, but is lacking the pizzazz of a page with static FBML. It would also be nice to have some kind of coupons or list of fun peanut facts, but that’s just nitpicking. The company is still driving traffic to the page so their fan total of 2,142 should grow rather quickly.

While the Sunday paper didn’t offer more companies that were driving more visitors to their pages, at least it is a start. Hopefully this trend continues to grow because two out of 200 is far from good. What do you think of the ads? Where could Boston Market and Planters have improved?

4 Responses to Chicken + Peanuts = Conversation Starter
  1. TJ Dietderich
    March 9, 2010 | 2:54 pm

    Gotta disagree with you here, Jeff. I hate it when these SM “buttons” appear in offline ads. It's a frustrating waste of space; do they really expect consumers to go through all that trouble of finding their social media profiles?

    Until mobile technology has progressed to the point where we can scan & go, or geo-locate & go, pasting a Twitter or Facebook logo on an ad is pretty useless.

  2. jeffespo
    March 9, 2010 | 3:12 pm

    Its a start and picks up real estate. I would rather the URL as was the case with Planters. Because look what happened with Boston Market as the Twitter URL one would assume was squatted and suspended.

    In the case of offline ads with couponing or a commercial why not blast a URL on there? Does it ruin the experience for you?

    You're also more advanced technologically than most people who still receive a Sunday paper. I'd rather online than something that blackens my fingers, but would argue that the ads without a logo or url is a wasted opportunity for these companies.

  3. Good job Kraft | Jeff Esposito's Blog
    May 19, 2010 | 4:30 am

    […] don’t bring their marketing messages together. For instance a while ago a wrote about a pair of brands that were close, but no cigar, so I didn’t expect much when I signed up for a box of free […]

  4. […] are able to increase awareness of their social profiles to existing customers (a good example is Planters Peanuts). By connecting them with the company, potential customers gain more of a personal relationship and […]

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