Church's Chicken

Author:Rayna Bailey

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980 Hammond Dr. NE, Ste. 1100

Atlanta, Georgia 30328


Telephone: (770) 350-3800

Fax: (770) 512-3920

Web site:


Church's Chicken, owned by AFC Enterprises, had a reputation for serving traditional Southern-fried chicken as well as other Southern favorites, such as fried okra and biscuits with honey. But the chain was falling behind its competitors and had just a 6 percent market share in 2001. To reestablish brand identity and reconnect with consumers, the chain launched three marketing campaigns in as many years. Beginning in 2000 the company launched "Maybe It's Your Cooking," which was followed in 2001 by the reintroduction of one of its classic themes from the 1980s, "Big Pieces, Little Prices." When those campaigns failed to get the results the company wanted, it launched, in 2002, the "Full Flavor, Full Pockets, Full Life" slogan and marketing campaign. Shortly after its launch the campaign was renamed "Full Flavor, Full Pockets."

Developed by the company and its Atlanta-based agency BaylessCronin, the campaign was described by AFC Enterprises as "the most powerful brand launch in its history." The $15 million campaign included television spots, radio, print, and billboard ads, and an interactive website tie-in. It also launched the company's new theme, "Full Flavor, Full Pockets, Full Life," and introduced the chain's cartoon mascots, named Full Flavor and Full Pockets. Church's chief marketing officer, Ann Stone, said of the characters, "Since they don't resemble anyone, they can be anyone, and our guests in market research validated that."

While the campaign was created to capture the brand's true essence and to resonate with consumers, it fell flat. Prior to the campaign's launch Church's sales were climbing; following its 2002 introduction sales began to fall, and customers failed to connect with the cartoon mascots. In 2003 the company shifted most of its creative work from BaylessCronin to Gecko Motion, an agency based in Johannesburg, South Africa, and the campaign was revamped. "Full Flavor, Full Pockets" was replaced in 2004 with a new campaign, "We Got the Crunch," aimed at the chain's multicultural, multiethnic, urban customers.


From its beginnings in 1952 as a single restaurant serving only Southern-fried chicken and located across from the Alamo in San Antonio, Texas, Church's Chicken grew to the nation's number two chicken franchise business by the late 1980s. In 1989 Church's Chicken merged with the number three chain, Popeyes Chicken & Biscuits. Despite the merger the two operations remained

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separate, each offering its own distinct brand of fried chicken and menu offerings—Church's with a Southern style and Popeyes serving up Cajun. Three years later the two chains were acquired by AFC Enterprises, and change was soon in the air. Top on the agenda for parent AFC was reimaging the brands and upgrading the restaurants of both chains. In addition AFC began an expansion effort with Church's. By 2002 the chain had grown from 1,078 stores to 1,517, with locations in eight countries besides the United States.

To emphasize its quality food and reasonable prices, Church's in 2001 revived its successful ad campaign "Big Pieces, Little Prices," which had first been used in the mid-1980s. Created by Atlanta-based agency BaylessCronin, the tagline clearly identified the brand and struck a chord...

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