Sci Fi's 'Battlestar Galactica' Promotion Scored For KFC


The sweepstakes might have centered on "Can't Say That Word Sweepstakes," but given strong recall results Sci Fi can say its partnership with KFC on the integrated campaign with Battlestar Galactica's final season was successful.
A comprehensive on-air, online and mobile campaign pointed to the "Can't-Say-That-Word-On-TV" sweepstakes throughout Battlestar Galactica's 10-week season, which culminated with the March 16 series finale.
The sweepstakes -‘frak' was the ‘unspoken' word-- drew over 100,000 entries, as the network and KFC rewarded 10 winners with the "Ultimate Battlestar Galactica Fan Pack," which included an autographed script, Battlestar Galactica Cylon Toaster, the complete DVD series set, and the grand prize of a year's worth of KFC.
"It was a good match," said Shari Weisenberg, vice president, strategic marketing at Sci Fi. "Battlestar Galactica has a deep, loyal fan base, which we know would engage both online and on-air. KFC saw it as a means to get new customers."
Chris Czarkowski, head of Sci Fi ad sales, said KFC had been a long-term advertiser with the network, but had not been associated with Battlestar Galactica.
"The show was a big driver for Sci Fi in the first quarter. KFC saw the quality of the show and the audience," he said of the highly affluent base of viewers, as Sci Fi ranks among the leaders with household incomes of $75,000 and $100,000. "Battlestar Galactica was a strong performer among adults 18 to 49, as well as families, which was one of reasons KFC promoted buckets of chicken offers during the campaign."
Throughout the period, Sci Fi aired a series of customized on-air vignettes, which scored well with viewers. "The hybrids ranked among the highest brand recall and for the messaging," said Weisenberg, pointing to Nielsen IAG data, indicating that the KFC on-air hybrids were 103% higher than the cable norm relative to brand recall and 82% higher in likeability. In addition, Battlestar Galactica program engagement was 29% higher than the cable norm.
The on-air hybrids airing in Battlestar Galactica ranked No. 1 for brand recall on cable for the quick service restaurant category. Co-branded vignettes boosted traditional KFC ads in Battlestar Galactica, which were 69% higher than the cable norm in brand recall.
The integrated campaign also featured a number of online elements such as "Feed the Fans" in which users were given a custom co-branded KFC/BSG coupon upon entering the sweeps. With "Hear the Fans," KFC asked BSG fans to share their thoughts on the final season allowing users to not only submit their thoughts, but read other enthusiasts' thoughts through the custom graffiti wall. As for the "Cheer the Fans," and provided an embedded video player featuring expanded Battlestar Galactica clips.
Battlestar viewers, who also went online, were 23% more likely to consider eating at KFC and 80% more likely to have a favorable opinion of KFC than fans who only watched on TV.
While the Sci Fi executives couldn't point to specific KFC sales increase during the campaign's period, they did note that over 100,000 coupons were downloaded, foreshadowing an intent to purchase.
Looking ahead, Sci Fi Channel, which will rebrand itself Syfy on air and online starting July 7 in an effort to expand its scope and own its trademark, is in conversations with a number of advertisers about integrated campaigns for upcoming series.