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Fun-Filled Friday: KFC Uh-Oh, Sean Croxton On Oprah’s Free Meal Promo, And The New Star Trek Movie

Posted May 08 2009 11:36pm

Funny funny bo-bunny, banana-nana bo-bunny, fee fi fo funny…FUNNY! Yep, it’s that time again on Friday afternoons when we let it all hang out to have some good old fashioned fun here at the “Livin’ La Vida Low-Carb” blog in our weekly segment known as “Fun-Filled Friday” (or FFF for short). There’s some really crazy stuff out there this week to share with you, so let’s get right into it!

Ya’ll remember that free grilled chicken promotion from KFC a couple of weeks ago where the restaurant chain gave away a free PIECE of their new Kentucky Grilled Chicken to customers that day. I commented to Christine at the time that they should have given away a whole meal if they wanted to see the kind of response Denny’s had with their free Grand Slam promotion after the Super Bowl this year. Well, not only did they take my suggestion, but they got the #1 marketing magician in the world to tell the whole world about it–Oprah Winfrey!

But that’s not the whole story. Did you hear about customers with the free meal coupons being turned away just one day after the coupon was made available? It seems not all KFC stores were participating in the promotion, but customers were not alerted to this fact. Didn’t the marketing geniuses at KFC corporate KNOW that this would be an overwhelming campaign and prepare accordingly with their franchisees about handling the inevitable situations that arose? Apparently not since they are now discontinuing the free meal and giving out rain checks instead along with this lame apology:

Had KFC President Roger Eaton consulted with me beforehand, I could have told him this was gonna happen and save him a lot of heartache. I used to work for a pretty major restaurant chain in the customer relations department and we heard complaints like this from customers about franchise vs. company stores all the time. It is imperative when you take on a national campaign like a free chicken meal that you communicate in large enough letters that it is limited to PARTICIPATING RESTAURANTS ONLY because most customers don’t have a clue which is which regarding their local KFC. Now this has blown up into something worse than it really needed to be.

In fact, I went down to my local KFC this morning with my coupons in hand to see if I could redeem my free meal from Oprah for lunch. When I got there, a male customer was in front of me inquiring about his free Kentucky Grilled Chicken meal with his printed coupon in plain site and the obviously-frustrated and bedazzled employee explained that the coupon was no longer valid because of some computer malfunction and that rain checks would be given out instead. However, when he asked about getting one of the rain checks, she said they were out at the time and they MIGHT be getting more after 3:00pm. WOW, is this for real? I guess Oprah got so inundated with negative responses that she posted these instructions for her viewers who got shafted by KFC this week. It’s all pretty funny if you ask me!

On the flip side of KFC-gate this week, though, is the nutritional black hole of this allegedly “healthy” meal option. Leave it to my buddy Sean Croxton from “Underground Wellness” (podcast interview with him coming June 8, 2009!) to tell it like it is about Oprah’s involvement in promoting this carb-laden chicken meal:

GET ‘EM, Sean! I like that…REthink KFC. I can’t wait for you to hear more from Sean in my interview with him next month. Well, I took Christine to go see the new Star Trek movie last night and it was pretty sensational. Christine is a bona-fide sci-fi freak and has been a Trekkie and a half for most of her life (yes, she has a uniform and all the gizmos and gadgets–she even has an autographed plaque from all the original Star Trek stars). I am not, but I have to say this movie was engagingly entertaining from start to finish (and Leonard Nimoy’s presence on-screen was as powerful as anything I’ve seen in a movie in a long time) and I hope you get a chance to go out and see it this weekend. WATCH THE MOVIE TRAILER! I took this photo of future Spock with my iPhone in the theater:

That’s about it for this week! Enjoy your weekend and keep on livin’ la vida low-carb!

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