In June, the Dairy Queen system launched its biggest menu rollout in brand history with the new DQ Bakes! line of Hot Desserts à la Mode, Artisan-style Sandwiches, and Snack Melts. To match the occasion, the 75-year-old brand is now debuting its most extensive television advertising campaign yet to introduce customers to the nine new products.
The campaign builds off of Dairy Queen’s image as a company whose guests are more than customers—they’re genuine Fans. Every month for three consecutive months, Dairy Queen will be featuring one of the categories within the Bakes! line in a television campaign that celebrates fandom of all sort—from obsessions with vintage cars and dedication to funk master Lionel Richie, to love of the warm Ciabatta bread on the brands’ new Chicken Bacon Ranch Artisan-Style Sandwich.
DQ has created six TV spots with the help of its longtime advertising partner, Barkely, to run throughout September, October, and November, with thoughtful placement within some of the season’s highest-rated programming, including primetime finales and premiers.
While social media marketing has been the darling of advertising teams for most of recent memory, the brand’s executive vice president of marketing, Barry Westrum, says that having a strong TV presence increases brand interaction and product awareness. “There’s no question that consumers are using social media more and more, but this concept of second-screen viewing—when people are both watching television and commenting via social media—is a big deal right now,” he says. To make sure soon-to-be customers can engage with the new ads, each spot is tagged with the hashtag #ImaFan to encourage feedback on social media. “We really wanted to include tags just to see how we can be a part of the conversation that’s going on out there, and we’re really excited to see the feedback on this campaign,” Westrum adds.
The brand already has more than 10 million likes on Facebook, and is referenced once every 18 seconds on various social media platforms—an impressive stat Westrum hopes to boost with the new captivatingly comical TV spots.
So far, Westrum says the feedback on the new products has been tremendous, and that DQ fans have been raving over the new menu’s fast-casual quality and affordable price—further solidifying Dairy Queen as the place for “Fan Food, not fast food.”
By Emily Byrd