Sunday, May 10, 2009

chicken little

KFC blew it. They had a perfect opportunity to make a good impression and really reinforce their "Unthink" advertising campaign. They even had the almighty Oprah behind them. Other businesses have been able to figure it out. Ben & Jerry's hands out free cones every year. Denny's gave away two million Grand Slam breakfasts the Tuesday after the Super Bowl.

Instead of picking a day and doing a simple giveaway, KFC asked people to go online and print a coupon. They stopped honoring the coupons after a day or two and now require patrons to apply for a rain check. The letter (and press release) from KFC President Roger Eaton makes it sound like they don't have enough grilled chicken to go around. There was no line and plenty of grilled chicken available when I got there last night. The clerk behind the counter said he thought that counterfeit coupons were the real problem.

KFC's public relations fiasco made me wish El Pollo Loco had a restaurant in Knoxville. Not only did one of my favorite fast food places do a successful chicken giveaway in April, they are honoring KFC's coupons on Mother's Day.

Frustrated by last night's inconvenience, I chose not to buy my dinner at KFC. On the way home, I realized that I was fairly close to M&M Catering. Considering how often I used to stop by their old location (now home to Two Sisters Sandwiches & Sweets), I was surprised that I had not yet been to their new place at Middlebrook and Chert Pit Road. A memo in the window points out that they were chosen as best barbecue joint in the 2008 Metro Pulse survey. They made runner-up this year.

I ordered a chicken sandwich with a mixture of hot and mild sauce. Like their previous spot, there's no place to sit and eat. All orders are to go. While I waited, the lady behind the counter told me that the reason their website didn't work when I clicked on it last week was because it was being rebuilt. The sandwich looked good but the meat was only lukewarm. Bummer. I picked the chicken off the bun and zapped it in the microwave at home.

An inscription in the concrete caught my eye as I carried my sandwich to the car. It read "In Memory of Robert; M&M Catering; Love, wife & kids."

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Blogger Sandy Weaver Carman said...

Sounds like maybe it was Robert who was in charge of keeping the chicken hot all those years. Hope you enjoyed the sandwich anyway, Frank!

Blogger Jere said...

Maybe it was lukewarm because you stood there and took the best picture possible before taking it home. :P


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