KFC Attracts Customers on the Go with Promotional Cups

Consumers like convenience and never before has fast food been so popular. There are drive-thrus so that you don’t even have to leave your car and not just for fast food. I have seen drive-thrus at pharmacies, dry cleaners and even supermarkets. Most Americans usually are on a tight schedule and want convenience where ever they can get it. But convenience is not all they are looking for. It is no surprise to most of us that many Americans are hard pressed to find time for home cooked meals around the dinner table and often turn to fast food as an alternative.

KFC Go Cups

Photo from kfc.com

Although American’s are purchasing fast food in record numbers, more and more they are looking for healthier options. KFC recognized this and made an effort to bridge the gap between fast food and healthy options by introducing their new Go Cups. Designed to fit into just about any car cup holder, the Go Cup holds smaller portions often referred to as “snack-sized” and comes with five different food options. The Go Cup doesn’t only just fit into your car cup holder, it separates the food you ordered; chicken from fries for example. The most interesting fact is that KFC has not only found a way to make their customer’s meal more convenient while they are driving but it also passes on savings to the consumer because the Go Cup meal options cost almost half the price of the least expensive full meal on KFC’s menu. I know, it may sound like I am writing this piece to advertise KFC’s new Go Cup but that is not the case. Reading about the new addition to KFC’s menu caused me think about how often businesses are looking for a way to keep their brand relevant and often the answer is innovation and risk taking, KFC has done both.

In addition to convenience, KFC has found a way to create a healthier food option and a less expensive alternative to other items on the menu. The smaller portion sizes alleviate some of the guilt that may come with purchasing fast food and the less expensive option speaks to the fact that KFC is sensitive to the expense that comes with dining out. For KFC the cheaper prices broadens their target market. By making their product less expensive they have simultaneously made it more affordable for potential customers and existing customers alike.

kfc cups

Convenience goes a long way. For example, United States Post Office is almost out of business because it is more convenient to send emails. When is the last time you mailed a hand written letter? When is the last time you mailed a typed letter? If you were to ask anyone under the age of 25 about a pen pal they would either think you were referring to their Facebook/Twitter/Instagram friend or that they misheard you all together and you said PayPal. Speaking of social media, there is also a KFC Instagram campaign that goes along with the Go Cup. Users are encouraged to Instagram photos of the cup with the hash tag #GOCUPGO. This is a great example of how your customers can do the marketing for you! Similar to how the Red Solo Cup became popular through a music video.

The Go Cup is innovative; a branding dream. They have found a way to market to the changing consumer. I don’t eat out much however almost everyone eats out at least once a week. Where do most of us eat? Why on the go, of course. Members on the boards of other food chains must be wishing they had of thought of the cups first. The Go Cup is not just a food carrier, it is a promotional product. KFC found a way to make their promotional cups a part of the eating experience and in doing so they have created a way for potential customers to see their logo. The cups have the KFC logo on both sides along with their famous red and white colors. The design is sleek and eye catching, just what you would want in a promo cup. Because the Go Cup is something many people have not seen before, marketers are hoping that it will draw old and new customers into having a conversation about it resulting in them later making a purchase.

Taking a risk is just what KFC may have needed and it looks like it is about to pay off. Often it is something new and innovative that takes our company to the next level. Through convenience, branding and marketing through social media, expanding our target market and changing policies or products to fit the ever changing needs of consumers your business will have all of the necessary tools to be successful for many years to come.

Has your company done something new or innovative to evolve with an ever changing market? If so, what was it and did it work? I’d like to know.

Have you ever run a social media campaign? How did it work out? What about the cups, what are your thoughts?

50 thoughts on “KFC Attracts Customers on the Go with Promotional Cups

  1. I’m not a huge fan of fast food outlets, but when the need arises, I don’t use the drive thru. I go inside, as I want to keep an eye on what’s been served to me. I don’t want to find some creepy crawler on my food. I’m all for healthier foods. I also like what KFC is doing with respect to the cups. Love the convenience. Good read. Blessings.
    Dr. Johnny Velazquez recently posted…Is Your Dream Dead?My Profile

  2. Arleen,

    While I am certainly no huge fan of fast food joints, I am a fan of powerful marketing. I certainly agree with your points. KFC has found a simple way to totally rebrand their market, with these GoCups. I would be interested to see numbers of how this works for them after a few years, but i would “think” it would open up whole new markets for them.

    Now if only some fast food chain could create TRULY healthy fast food alternatives.

    SJ Scott recently posted…How to Not “Lapse” in a Habit From the Hot-Cold Empathy GapMy Profile

  3. Like others above, I am not a fan of the fast food industry. I rarely eat outside, especially since I am not taking any classes this semester. Last year and all, I used to eat at college, but that was once or twice a week. I prefer eating at home, where I can trust the food to be healthy, at least to an extent, since people do use a lot of chemicals/hormones for plants/animals.

    So, I can’t exactly relate to this product, but I can see how this is a great idea. Taking risks is part of achieving success, but KFC has already done that. I only wish if others/other companies would follow this – to face their fears/nervousness and take the risks.

    Anyways, thank you for sharing this, Arleen 🙂

  4. THAT made me hungry. Glad I have a KFC just 8 minutes from me to go test that out.

    Just this morning I spoke with someone I interviewed for my book. He was telling me about something quite creative he “happened” on. From being a one off event, it is now a regular monthly one in almost a dozen Canadian cities and growing, even into the USA.

    I suppose when you asked, “Has your company done something new or innovative to evolve with an ever changing market? If so, what was it and did it work?” that is what it made me think of. Top of mind. Apparently his idea evolved and has a market.

    Arleen always insightful. Thanks.
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  5. I appreciate the convenience and the branding of this offering, but I’m still not sold on KFC being a healthy choice. 🙂 What I do like is that they are always thinking. Whether its changing their name just enough to to take you away from saying “fried” but not enough to lose their market or when they came out with popcorn chicken. They know how to get attention and retain it. Despite dramatic market shifts that should be taking customers away from the kind of food they sell, they hold their market.
    Debra Yearwood recently posted…How To Be A Charismatic LeaderMy Profile

    • Debra- Trust me I would not eat KFC’s idea of healthy choice. I agree that thinking of something that is going to take you to the next level with brand recognition is how you survive. Most companies do not survive when they change their name to initials, but KFC was able to come up with ideas to get the brand moving in a profitable direction.
      Arleen recently posted…KFC Attracts Customers on the Go with Promotional CupsMy Profile

  6. Hey Arleen,

    I’ve seen that commercial and thought it was funny. I also saw that they had these promotional cups and they did catch my eye. I know the post is more about taking chances and doing things differently that will get you more customers and this one seems to be doing the trick for the most part.

    I’m also not a big fan of past food but my mother does love her fried chicken so we’ll make a trip once in a blue moon to get some although KFC isn’t my favorite. Yeah, no new cup in the world will make me enjoy their food more but hey, if it works for them then I say go for it.

    Thanks for yet another lesson on how some companies aren’t afraid to take chances on things. We definitely all need to take a page from their book.

    Adrienne recently posted…Why Your Social Sharing Buttons Drive Me NutsMy Profile

    • Adrienne- As you know I am not promoting KFC but the idea of thinking of new innovative ideas to get your customers wanting more.

      I can’t remember the last time I ate at a fast food restaurant and I not proponent of fried chicken. One never knows what makes a person buy, but if it works that is all they are looking to accomplish.

      Never be afraid to take a chance.
      Arleen recently posted…KFC Attracts Customers on the Go with Promotional CupsMy Profile

  7. Smart move by KFC, Arleen. They found a way of catering to consumers wanting convenience, healthier options and paying less money. That’s a concept that can be adapted to many businesses. Just wish people would realise that even if KFC makes their options healthier the food they sell is still far from healthy:-)
    Catarina recently posted…What makes you follow a leader?My Profile

  8. The cup is definitely a great idea, and fast food outlets are making an attempt to gradually offer healthier choices. I will go to any length not to eat in my car. When I eat out, I want to be able to take the time to enjoy my meal. Hmmm, that cup would be even more clever if the outside could be make of napkin-like material.
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  9. It is interesting… I am sitting at a Starbucks right now, but there is a KFC in the same strip mall that I am at, and a “Go Cup” sounds really good right now. Just sayin! You are correct, whoever developed the campaign for this product offering I think hit a home run… In much the same way “sliders” are popular as a sharable burger option in many places these days.

    Great post! Thank you for sharing!!
    Mark Brody recently posted…What’s really important?My Profile

  10. Hi Arleen,

    Would you believe I never had KFC? Not a fan of fast food but I am a fan of watching the big companies come up with new ideas.

    Thanks for introducing me to this, I never even seen the commercial. It is good food for thought (pardon the pun) because as small marketers we do need to pay attention to what those big boys are doing. Is it a success or not?

    Emulating campaigns from major companies is a great idea. When I see things like this it starts my wheels turning to my own company.


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