Back in February, CKE Restaurants revealed its decision to split Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s. The idea being each brand deserved a separate and distinct identity. Customers crossed the two more often than not, and some were simply just confused by the relation. Initially, CKE gave Carl’s Jr. its chance to go solo through agency Havas Chicago. Labeled “Call of Carl’s,” the campaign, featuring the voice of actor Matthew McConaughey, introduced digital creative into the marketing universe around “crave culture,” and the promotion of Carl’s Jr.’s iconic Western Bacon Cheeseburger. Read more about it here.
Now, it’s Hardee’s turn.
“Hardee’s has been, and always will be a brand that ‘welcomes you home,'” Jason Marker, chief executive officer, CKE, said in a statement. “It’s an exciting time for not only the brand, but for the entire company. We will accelerate the growth of our business by providing both iconic brands the space they need to grow, putting our unbeatable quality and great tasting food at the forefront of the business.”
For the first time in nearly a decade, CKE launched a campaign built just for Hardee’s. Havas Chicago was at the controls of this one as well, labeled “Tastes Like America.” CKE is stressing the values Hardee’s shares with customers throughout the country. It will feature real people, real moments, and real food, CKE said.
“No fast food brand has ‘comfort culture’ more core to its DNA than Hardee’s,” Jeff Jenkins, chief marketing officer, said in a statement. “Just like we’re pushing ‘crave culture’ forward with Carl’s Jr., we’re going to use this new campaign to introduce customers to ‘comfort culture’ at Hardee’s, placing a heavy emphasis on local pride and quality food.”
This “comfort culture” is defined as a “down home, done right,” approach to food, CKE said. Hip hop music star Big Wet is voicing the campaign in Hardee’s new TV spot and anthem song.
“Hardee’s is part of the fabric of a modern American culture,” said Jason Peterson, chief creative officer, Havas Creative, U.S. “It’s a reflection of a contemporary society in America that isn’t celebrated often enough.”
CKE said its marketing efforts for Hardee’s “will be impossible to ignore” in the coming months as Tastes Like America airs on the regional and local levels. It will also carry over into the restaurants with a revived look and feel, as well as new menu items that feature handmade processes, and regional campaigns tailored to the local markets they serve.
Check out the first ad below.