Skip to main content

Adhacked Review – Swiss Chalet Canadian Summer Fest

Call click or cluck. An animated chicken. Multiple price points. Too much food.  And beer cozies.

We don’t believe this ad was rooted in a consumer insight, but if we had to guess, it was born more out of a corporate insight – management putting pressure on marketing to grow same store sales and wanting to ensure there’s a lift in business over the slower summer season.  A potentially more effective insight to leverage could have been around being able to enjoy the barbeque without the work or when you don’t have the time.  With the introduction of corn, we think that’s the occasion they were going after.  That insight could have turned into a simple, single message to communicate and executed differently, could have created an emotional connection.  This ad doesn’t leave the viewer saying “they get me”.  In fact, it left us saying “I don’t get them”.

We suspect brand recall would be low on this ad, especially since the look, feel and tonality of Swiss Chalet advertising has been in constant flux lately.  One consideration would be to use real food photography that drives appetite appeal (tighter crops/close-ups on hero food items), and less of it. There are so many options, messages, and price points that we don’t remember any.  All of the add–ons give this brand a very American feel and seem counter to the food trends that are prevalent in today’s marketplace as Canadians journey towards healthier eating. Couple that with the fake picnic table and out-of-proportion settings, and you’ve got the antithesis of another big trend – real and authentic.

We wondered what else they could pack into this ad.  Less is more is an important reminder here.

This was a Canadian company we felt emotionally connected to and now looks unrecognizable, unreal, and unbelievably functional.

Bring back the rotisserie oven please – a strong brand mneumonic that topped and tailed the ads with amazing appetite appeal.