Domino's moo-ves in to milk some action from 'Cow Appreciation' events

July 12, 2017 | by S.A. Whitehead

What do you do when a competitor has a really good annual promotion that they thought of first? If you're Domino's, you apparently tell the competition to "moo-ve" over.

Such is the case today, as Domino's QSR competitor Chick-fil-A celebrates its Cow Appreciation Day — while the pizza chain launched its own "Cow Appreciation Week" promotion yesterday in honor of all the dairy cows that contribute one of the key ingredients to its pizzas, Domino's said.

The chicken chain has based much of its brand image on the idea that anxious anthropomorphic beef cattle are looking to save their own hides by urging consumers to patronize the chicken chain, never mind the somewhat ironic fact that the cows featured in Chick-fil-A ads are actually Holstein dairy cows. This has not prevented the quasi-holiday Cow Appreciation Day — underway for at least a decade now — from growing more successful by the year. 

On this annual occasion, Chick-fil-A rounds up tons of extra orders from cow suit-donning customers who score "free chikin" with their costuming efforts. For its part, the chain scores all kinds of free media, particularly from local TV news stations looking for so-called "kicker" stories that highlight lighter subjects.

Apparently the cow-touting temptation proved too much for Domino's this year, so the pizza QSR is introducing its own celebratory event focused on getting more diners online with the brand by offering them half off their online orders through Sunday, July 16.

"At Domino's, we're big fans of cows and dairy farmers," Domino's spokesperson, Jenny Fouracre, said in a news release about the chain's Cow Appreciation Week promo. "Without them, we wouldn't be able to offer all of the cheeses — from mozzarella to Parmesan, feta to provolone, American to Asiago — that we lovingly put on our pizzas day in and day out. It just seems right to celebrate our appreciation of all things dairy by giving customers half off pizza when they use Domino's digital ordering channels."

Meanwhile, at U.S. Chick-fil-A restaurants, any customer who shows up today wearing a cow outfit walks away with a free entrée as part of the brand's long-established Cow Appreciation Day. 

The chain has been diligent over the years about protecting its bovine-based advertising, challenging dozens of brands and individuals who have tried to draft off that theme, so it will be interesting to see if anything similar develops over Domino's latest move. Beyond that possibility, the biggest beneficiaries of all this bovine-based attention seems to the ol' cud-chewing cows themselves. 

Photo: iStock


Topics: Business Strategy and Profitability, Cheese, Marketing / Branding / Promotion


S.A. Whitehead / Award-winning veteran print and broadcast journalist, Shelly Whitehead, has spent most of the last 30 years reporting for TV and newspapers, including the former Kentucky and Cincinnati Post and a number of network news affiliates nationally. She brings her cumulative experience as a multimedia storyteller and video producer to the web-based pages of Pizzamarketplace.com and QSRweb.com after a lifelong “love affair” with reporting the stories behind the businesses that make our world go ‘round. Ms. Whitehead is driven to find and share news of the many professional passions people take to work with them every day in the pizza and quick-service restaurant industry. She is particularly interested in the growing role of sustainable agriculture and nutrition in food service worldwide and is always ready to move on great story ideas and news tips.

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