Industry News | July 1, 2011

Celebrity Gymnast Tumbles Into DQ Ad Spot

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Olympic gymnast Mary Lou Retton is used to tumbling, just not from a piñata. But that’s just what she does in the Dairy Queen system’s newest television commercial set to air in July in time for National Ice Cream Month.

The live action spot with Retton ties in the Dairy Queen system’s unified “So Good It’s RiDQulous campaign theme. In the spot, the DQ manager spokesperson explains that at Dairy Queen “we don’t just have piñatas; we have piñatas filled with Mary Lou Retton.” He then proceeds to hit the piñata causing it to break open and Retton falls out. The featured product in the TV commercial with Retton is the new Triple Chocoholic Blizzard Treat, which is the July Blizzard of the Month.

“Let’s just say there were lots of laughs and a few takes before we nailed it,” Retton says. “My performance résumé includes the balance beam, uneven parallel bars, floor exercise, vault, and now the piñata.”

This marks the first time since the 1970s that a DQ spot features a celebrity. Retton was identified for the spot because she is a Gen X mom of four who embodies the all-American brand.

“Mary Lou is an iconic Gen Xer and is great fit with our new tagline and strategy: ‘So Good It’s RiDQulous,’ ” says Michael Keller, chief brand officer for American Dairy Queen Corporation. “This advertising campaign is focused on impacting our core guest demographic and conveying to them that at DQ restaurants ‘good isn’t good enough,’ and that of course is something Mary Lou has successfully proven time and time again.”

Retton wasn’t the only celebrity involved in the DQ commercials. Academy Award-nominated Black Swan cinematographer Matthew Libatique filmed all live action spots.

“Matt, Mary Lou, and the entire production crew have done a tremendous job of elevating our brand and telling our story,” Keller says. 

News and information presented in this release has not been corroborated by QSR, Food News Media, or Journalistic, Inc.