We recently heard about Wendy's newest campaign that advertises the return of the BBQ Pulled Pork Sandwich and BBQ Pulled Pork Cheese Fries. Titled "Crack the Masters," the campaign by VML, a full service digital marketing and advertising agency, features a series of online videos that link to one another and transform the consumer’s experience of the advertisement into a game that almost anyone with Internet access can play.
According to Ketchum, the marketing agency that came up with the campaign, “Crack the Masters” sprung out of the realization that pitmasters will do anything to hide any secrets that might give away their own recipes for successful barbecued meat. In acknowledgement of this hurdle, the Wendy's team conducted extensive research by attending BBQ festivals and visiting the best BBQ joints in America. This has proven to be no easy task, however. And now, Wendy’s is asking for your help.
The interactive game follows a "choose your own adventure" format that lets you pick one master out of the three presented in the initial video (sauce, smoke and "hip") from whom you wish to intercept information.
But, that's not all.
Users watch a series of videos that feature some of the nation's master BBQ chefs (or so they appear) and try to pull out some of the "meatiest" secrets by reading each master's ego and personality. This, in effect, helps you decide how to respond to them. If you press a little, you might find out some secrets that go beyond Wendy's products and actually teach you helpful tips on how to make real, good BBQ. For example, you might learn what type of wood works the best for slow-cooking pork shoulder.
When I played the game, I chose to “press a little," and so as a result, I learned that some BBQ masters put coffee in their sauces. Helpful tip! Reminds me of when I learned that some people pour beer and powdered cinnamon into their chili.
To play "Crack the Masters" and learn more about Wendy's and the return of their beloved BBQ products, visit Wendy's official YouTube channel. I'll be pretending to dip my fries in cheese sauce.
This post was written by current Renegade intern Sam Oriach. You can follow him on Twitter @samoriach.
At Renegade, we’re committed to the idea of marketing as service. So when the friendly folks at SLICE, The Perfect Food, brought us two boxes of their scrumptious, all-natural pizzas, we were happy to add “marketing as meal,” to our canon.
Started in 2007 by twin entrepreneurs, Miki and Radha Agrawal, SLICE features organic, preservative-free pies with gluten-free and vegan variations available. While you can currently find SLICE in the West Village or the Upper East Side, rumors of new locations (including a possible Williamsburg venue) already have us salivating.
At the Renegade offices, the Master Chicken garnered yummy reviews, but it was the Yuri with ricotta cheese and truffle oil that had us unabashedly reaching for “just one more” slice.
— Nicole Duncan