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Kfc discovers the truth

May 4, 2005

For the last few years, KFC has suffered from brand schizophrenia, unsure of exactly who it was or what it could be. It tried to hide the “Fried” part of its name, and at one point it even tried to convince people that it was healthy.

However, in an A.D.D. world, people have short memories and a very forgiving, especially for a brand that has such strong equity.

Wisely, KFC has gone back to its roots and in the process, re-discovered its soul.

“It was right under our noses, we started in the South. Fried chicken is Southern-inspired. So who has more right to be Southern than us?”

Michelle Wickman- KFC

All this is visible in the new prototype stores being opened up in places like KFC’s hometown of Louisville, Kentucky.

These prototypes celebrate the traditional menu, the history and authenticity of the brand, albeit in a retro-cool way.

As we keep suggesting here at Influx, trends move in poles and while healthy eating exists, we also have indulgent eating and the desire for comfort food like KFC.

Instead of pretending to be something it isn’t, KFC is tapping into the comfort food trend and the need for tradition and authenticity, which will continue to be relevant, as the Baby-Boomer population ages.

KFC’s approach has a refreshing honesty about it, that makes sense in today’s cynical times. So often, strategists and marketers are so desperate to re-invent brands, under the misguided belief they are so damaged and broken.

Sometimes the solution is the obvious one, but often this can be the hardest to accept, when a shift to untried “greener pastures”, begins to seem like the most appealing option.

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