Listen, I like the execution of the spot.
I say that despite the fact it’s not that unusual; it feels familiar, this “real” person shot in a “real” way, revealing something about a brand that everyone involved is pretending consumers are misinformed about, and need the truth of. But it’s done well. Funny, efficient, personable: the way you would expect Larry Charles and the agency, Crispin Porter + Bogusky, to execute.
Problem I have: this is not that big of an issue for people, is it? Really? I wonder if they focus grouped it, because I can totally imagine a focus group (even a series of them) talking itself into thinking that fresh-sliced meat is more appealing and therefore an important differentiation.
And Lord knows, we all like a differentiated brand.
But my belief (and I’ve been wrong, but still, it’s my belief) is this is trumped-up. Maybe Arby’s has the media resources to make it a real issue. But I don’t know if modern people accustomed to a decent package of Hillshire Farms lunch meats and no personal memory of a butcher shop can really get all that excited about slicing the meat in-store instead of at an offsite location.
Watching this, one never feels the sting of, “Oo, they really got Subway now.” (One of my co-workers paying the typical amount of attention to TV ads actually thought this was a Subway commercial for quite awhile.)
In fact, my concern would be that it’s starting to make me think too much about the food, which was okay when Chipotle did it because their effort was wrapped in a huge movement based on radical, positive change. This sliced-in-store thing is (at this moment; I do reserve the right to allow CP+B to change my thinking) far less engaging than the issue of humane farming.
We’ll see. Change my mind, Arby’s. Make me care. I’m open to it.