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Friday, February 24, 2006

KFC Develops Ads for DVR Users

Users of digital video recorders are notorious for skipping over ads when replaying recorded TV programs -- a practice that deeply concerns advertisers. In response, fried chicken purveyor KFC is producing ads that are specifically designed for viewers who watch them on recording devices.

When viewers play back the ad slowly, they can view a "secret code" that they can then enter at the KFC website to get a coupon for a free sandwich. The ads debuted during NBC's broadcast of the Winter Olympics and will run until the end of March.

The advertising industry is applauding KFC's if-you-can't-beat-'em-join-'em approach, though the actual impact of the campaign is not yet known. “Any strategy that gets a message to rise above the clutter is terrific from the advertiser’s perspective,� says Josh Bernoff of Forrester Research.

UPDATE: ABC is reportedly refusing to air the KFC ads, calling the secret code "subliminal advertising."

Source: MSNBC