El Pollo Loco announced a new advertising campaign and the debut of “Loco,” a lively, animated spokesbird that will appear in commercials for the Mexican chicken chain.

Following three consecutive years of record sales and an increase of nearly 20 percent for the three-year period, El Pollo Loco is poised for continued success with a fresh new advertising campaign that introduces consumers to Loco, the newest member of the El Pollo Loco family. In 2002, this crazy chicken will be offering up solutions on how to survive the little insanities of modern life. His advice is simple: “When things get crazy, you need El Pollo Loco.”

Intricate animation techniques help the character come to life with fluid movement and loads of personality. Loco thinks he’s human, but clearly he’s not. He’s simply passionate about El Pollo Loco.

El Pollo Loco’s new creative direction represents a distinct departure from last year’s campaign, which focused on the different ways people experience El Pollo Loco. The new campaign highlights El Pollo Loco’s signature chicken and fresh Mexican offerings, the message with a memorable character that reinforces everything El Pollo Loco has to offer.

“El Pollo Loco is all about freshness, flavor, and value, and our food is also fun to eat,” said Margaret Jenkins, vice president of marketing for El Pollo Loco Inc. “What’s exciting about Loco, our new animated chicken, is that he embraces the essence of the brand by enthusiastically conveying how El Pollo Loco makes life easier for people— whether it’s offering them great value or a new menu item.”

The campaign will feature :30 second television spots that showcase Loco in various humorous predicaments. The first spot debuts March 11 in select West Coast markets and opens with Loco checking his watch and commenting on his lack of time. He then vigorously shakes his pocketbook upside down. Out floats a lone feather, setting up the opportunity for El Pollo Loco to solve his financial dilemma with four different combo meals, each including a drink, and each only $4.99.

“Loco represents the frantic days and evenings we all experience,” said Cliff Einstein, chairman and CEO of West Hollywood, California–based Dailey & Associates, the agency that created the campaign. “Fortunately, El Pollo Loco is always there for us, which is why we say, `When things get crazy, you need El Pollo Loco.’ ” Dailey & Associates has served as El Pollo Loco’s general market agency since 1998.

The new spots will run periodically during the year in select West Coast markets including Southern California, Northern California, Phoenix, and Las Vegas.

In addition to television commercials, the new campaign will feature :60 second radio spots featuring Loco. This spring, El Pollo Loco will introduce a new Spanish language advertising campaign created by its Hispanic agency, Los Angeles-based cruz/kravetz: IDEAS.

News, El Pollo Loco