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Chik-Fil-A continues to outdo the competition, this time with an ad promoting their new Spicy Chicken Sandwich. Featuring a bewildered nighttime security guard and a group of cows throwing a Spicee Chikin Launch Partee, the ad continues Chick-Fil-A’s stance as a powerhouse of Quick Serve Restaurant (QSR) advertising. So what do they know that we don’t? Well, let’s take a look….

What do you think these images have in common?

At first glance, it may simply look like a little bovine debauchery is going down. In reality, when asked to assign a meaning to each image, respondents more often than not chose “enjoyable place.” Hmmm…so Chik-Fil-A doesn’t have to actually show the restaurant to convey an enjoyable place? Interestingly, it seems so. The viewers translate the images metaphorically, so that the “partee” imagery lends itself to the conclusion that Chik-Fil-A is itself a fun place. To top it off, these images are recalled by 9 in 10 viewers are among the most positively received.

What does this mean?
Chick-Fil-A recognizes that people don’t watch TV to simply learn about [new] products, but to be entertained. This is an ad that engages more viewers than the average QSR ad and the strong positive emotion felt toward keys scenes translates to viewers being more likely to visit the restaurant. And with more visitors to a restaurant comes the potential for major “moo”lah.

Can you think of other ads that have metaphorically communicated enjoyable place without actually ever showing the “place”?