It might not even be a good idea to change everything at once. (Photo by Adam Hoover)

Every issue of Food & Drink since Summer 2011 has contained one of my columns. Here’s the latest one, from the Winter 2015-16 issue. (NOTE: The image is unique to this blog entry.) I had a call recently with a vice president of marketing for a rapidly growing restaurant chain. We’d chatted at a recent…

Grotesque magician trick with a black bun Burger King burger. “Observe; the bun is presently black—now I consuuuuuume the burger...”

Let us celebrate green poo. (I know that’s gross but it’s relevant, and I’ll explain.) Because I think something good is going on a BK HQ. They’re trying to attract the Millennials by BEING rather than SAYing, mostly. They are BEING different. They are acting like a brand whose store you’d be okay with someone…

Well, now this advertisement is going to look incredibly dated starting October 6. Unless it’s addressing vampires. Which maybe is another idea for McDonald’s to consider as it flails around—the goth trade.

After testing it on 4/20 (hinting darkly that this might appeal to a certain late-rising, munchy-prone segment that big corporations tend to acknowledge only winkingly if at all), McDonald’s is lettin’ ’er rip and serving us as much breakfast as we can afford starting October 6th—any time, all day, every day, every hour, no whining, no…

I frickin’ love the King appearing without explanation in places rich people are, so that people will start conversations on social media. I just wish they could be that nuanced and crafty in their other efforts over there at BK. The King needs to clean a little house.

Here are nine recent attempts by nine different restaurants to engage in the kind of advertising encouraged by this, the digital age—not a comprehensive list, and not a final word in the discussion. Just nine examples, and one good thing and one bad thing about each one. Before we jump in, these are the nine tactics:…