Chick-fil-A in O.C. offering free food all week

Six Orange County Chick-fil-As are giving away free food to diners each day this week, starting today with an 8-count chicken nugget dish.

The “Snack Attack” promotion is good from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. every day at restaurants in Orange, Irvine (2), Tustin, La Habra and Santa Ana.  A Cerritos Chick-fil-A is also participating in the freebie snack week.

No purchase is necessary.

Here’s the lineup of foods being offered each day:

Monday: 8-piece Nuggets

Tuesday: Waffle Potato Fries

Wednesday: Small Soft Serve Ice Cream

Thursday: Chick-n-Strips (3-count)

Friday: Fudge Brownie


Not Your Typical Trailer Park Home

In Knoxville, Tennessee architects have turned a mobile home into a new “industrial-chic ‘i-house’.”  Some say the home got its name because the long core of the home (the mobile trailer) as the base of the “i” and the guest-room office which is box-shaped is the i’s dot. But the builder’s CEO argues that the “i” in “i-home” stands for innovation, inspiration, intelligence and integration.

The concept was originally constructed as a moderately priced “plug and play” dwelling for the many environmentally conscious homebuyers.  The innovative green home features solar panels, as well as numerous energy-saving products.  Builders believe that the estimated costs for electricity and heating is around $1 per day.  The price of the i-home is around $100-$130 a square foot depending on amenities and add-ons.  Compared to a traditionally built house at around $200-$300 a square foot, this could be a really big product for the builder, especially if you consider these homes are eco-friendly too.

A prototype was unveiled in Knoxville and was priced around $140,000.  This included a fully furnished 1,000 square foot model, with a master bedroom, full bath, open kitchen and living room.  There is Ikea cabinetry, two ground-level deck areas as well as a separate “flex room” with a second full bath and second story deck with a canopy.  That sounds pretty innovative to me, they may have started with the metal base but they definitely turned it into something beautiful, unique and sell able.

For more about these “i-homes” go to:

KGC? What’s Going Right, Wrong

If you haven’t seen Kentucky Fried Chicken’s new grilled chicken products, you probably don’t have a television or radio.  KFC has been heavily promoting their new product launch with the hopes of getting the health conscious consumers into their restaurants.  In addition to traditional media, KFC tapped “The Big O,” Oprah, in order to create a little more consumer buzz.

KFC is trying to transform itself into “KGC” and they did so with a little help from an Oprah endorsement on Tuesday.  The Oprah tie-in offered coupons for free samples via the grilled chicken website (  The good news, the restaurant chain got a better than expected response.  The bad news, the response seemed to be too good; restaurants were unprepared for the influx of customers and some restaurants had to start turning guests away.

Industry experts are nervous that this snafu might cost the chain more customers than it converts.  Although the turning away of customers is never a good thing, this is a move the company needed to make.  They needed to create a “healthy” menu item because their counterparts already had and with their struggling share of the industry, healthy was the only new product that would make a splash.

The rebranding effort to KGC is a different story.  KFC has tried several times to rebrand itself and although KFC stuck, after several back and forth name changes, (taking away the “fried” in order to not have it top of mind for consumers) other efforts like their “rotisserie gold” healthy product flopped.  Consumers are going to be the ones that either accept KGC or they will be the ones to shoot it down.  Personally, one menu item shouldn’t allow KFC to change their name.  If they were making a move to mostly grilled with one or two fried menu items, maybe.

The industry believes it is going to be up to the consumer whether this grilled chicken product is a success or not.  To read about what industry experts believe are the positives and negatives of this new product and new name, go to:

Consumer-Centricity, The Way to Drive Business

Being Consumer-Centric: A Retailer and Manufacturer Update, a new study by IDC Global Retail Insights and sponsored by Demandtec and Precima, found that companies are really seeing the benefits of being consumer focused.  Consumer-centricity, as it is labeled, is a key factor of success in retail and this study proves there are more consumer-centric opportunities to drive business.

•  75% of retailers and 58% of consumer products manufacturers rank consumer-centricity as a top-three success factor.
• 80% of retailers and 67% of manufacturers expect to place an increased focus on it this year.
• The limited availability of team resources is the largest impediment to consumer-centric success for both retailers (37%) and manufacturers (43%).
• Lack of support and executive sponsorship is no longer a significant barrier for retailers (16%) with more than 75% retailers appointing a senior consumer-centricity role.

For the Brandweek article, go to:

For a complimentary executive summary of the survey, go to: and fill out the form.

Leo Burnett’s 2009 Trend Predictions

Leo Burnett, put together this 2009 Marketing Trend Predictions video.  The nine predictions they discuss in this 3 minute video include:

1. New Realism – Economic conditions will profoundly affect our cultural context moving forward. As our creative content becomes more tangible and honest in reflection, we will be forced to be more realistic about everything over the coming years…

2. Hyper Reality – Major developments are now happening at lightning speed and changing status quos are revealed in real time with very real consequences…

3. The Trust Economy – Trust is set to become a critical success factor for brands in 2009. Where we place our trust is changing dramatically. In turbulent times we look to organizations that share our concerns, manage anxiety and take the lead…

4. Eco Austerity – Being green was once costly, time consuming and a matter of conscience…

5. – While no media has ever replaced another, TV has been trapped in a corner for some time. In 2009 we will reach the tipping point for broadcast quality Internet Television…

6. Thread Marketing – In the future content will need to be free from central control and tradable in the new networks – tomorrows Facebook or Bebo…

7. Generation Game – Video games used to be the preserve of disenchanted adolescents, but as gaming becomes a truly mass pursuit, soon we will all be part of Generation Game…

8. The End of Fact – Perceived wisdom now changes on a daily basis and we should expect more contradictory opinions and diverse solutions being presented as definitive…

9. Brands as Vehicles – Brands are landing points; we follow our needs and invariably end up at a brand. This is all set to change…

OC Restaurant Week – February 22nd – 28th

Attention Orange County Foodies!  The inaugural Orange County Restaurant Week is set for February 22-28.  Participating restaurants will offer special three-course menus, aimed to showcase the region’s most talented chefs.  The $10 – $20 lunch menus and $20 – $40 dinner menus will feature locally grown and seasonal ingredients.

Pamela Waitt, president of the Orange County Restaurant Association, explains: “Orange County Restaurant Week was created to showcase Orange County as a premier dining destination and allow our many local food aficionados an opportunity to enjoy special prix-fixe menus from a wide variety of participating restaurants. With the current economic climate, this week-long event will allow diners to discover new restaurants in Orange County and enjoy all their favorites at a discounted price.  With unbeatable prices, those interested can afford to dine out every night of the week – after all, our tagline states, ‘The only thing to make for dinner during Restaurant Week is reservations!’”

Go to,, for the most up-to-date list of participating restaurants.

Hotels Training Managers With Videogames

Hilton Garden Inn has taken a new approach in training its managers.  Instead of boring seminars, the hotel chain handed out free Sony PSPs loaded with the program Ultimate Team PlayUltimate Team Play is a training game that allows managers to respond to various guest-related scenarios within a 3-D virtual environment.  Points are rewarded for the appropriate problem-solving strategy.

The game is part of Hilton Garden Inn’s global training plan which aims to attract younger talent and keep existing employees engaged.

For the full article, go to:

New Whitehouse, New Website

I thought the images below were very interesting.  The first image is the new-Obama White House website home page. The second image is a screenshot of the White House from when George Bush originally took office. The final picture is the home page from when Clinton took office.

(Screenshots courtesy of USA Today article:

Grocery Shopping For A Purpose

Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market has just announced plans to start a local school donation program.  Fresh & Easy currently has 11 Orange County markets and they will be donating $1 for every $20 spent to a K-8 school within a 3-mile radius of the Fresh & Easy store.  The Shop for Schools program starts Feb. 1 and goes through March 31.

Schools have until January 23rd to register and can click here or call 866-969-9849 for further details.