Zig takes New York Fries in new direction

'Real Fries in a Fake World' is the theme of a campaign that bowed yesterday, bringing the brand into ladies mags in a big new way.

In its 25-year history, Toronto-HQ’d New York Fries’ ad creative has focused exclusively on product shots, and has been largely OOH-centric. That all changed yesterday, when Toronto’s zig agency began rolling out the first full-page print campaign that NY Fries has ever executed. In the past, the Canadian company, which has more than 190 stores in major shopping centres and movie theatres here, hasn’t used many print ads and relied mostly on mall boards.

With media buys by Toronto’s Media Experts, print ads will appear in magazines including Chatelaine, Hello, Flare, Canadian Living, People, Style at Home and Canadian House & Home through May 2009 – specifically targeting women 25-49 because they are key influencers in their households. As well, in-store POS materials will support the print element.

While the pitch’s backbone remains the same as in the past – i.e. the fresh, no-additives nature of the fries – executions for the ‘Real Fries in a Fake World’ initiative are also completely different, explains zig president/CEO Andy Macaulay. ‘By exaggerating the real vs. fake messaging in a comical yet truthful way, the advertising stands out as provocative and educational.’

What he’s referring to are the campaign’s exaggerated character portraits of people who have embraced fake stereotypes, but are savvy enough to choose the real thing when they’re in the mood for fries.

‘This campaign is a real departure from our traditional marketing of a fries ‘beauty shot,” says New York Fries president Jay Gould. ‘By juxtaposing our real fries against fake breasts, nails, hair, Botox and toupees, we are educating Canadians that New York Fries are made from real potatoes and are cooked in non-hydrogenated, trans-fat-free sunflower oil. No preservatives, no coatings – just real, fresh ingredients.’