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Wendy's Real Time: An Interactive, Social Ad Campaign About Bacon

Wendy's has been advertising their new Bacon Deluxe burger which features four strips of Applewood bacon: wendys bacon deluxe

So unless you love bacon, why is this interesting? Because Wendy's has been promoting the burger heavily in an interactive campaign that runs on prominent websites like ESPN and Gizmodo - and concurrent to a large television campaign... and that the campaign is billed as "Wendy's Real Time" - a play on the real time web and their focus on "real burger" taste.

The takeaway (which I moved up from the bottom of the post) is that this is a unique and interesting swing at real time advertising / branding... but it is too dynamic and too big. The interactions and user experience would be greatly simplified if they integrated with Twitter's OAuth and also with Facebook Connect. Why ask people to leave to post, interact, etc. Make it simple up front and then push the data both directions: on and on Twitter / Facebook (both of which have clear benefits).

Below is a screenshot of an expansion leaderboard ad that features the burger and invites you to "view Wendy's real time":

Wendys Real Time Leaderboard expansion ad

The leaderboard retracts into a traditional size, but it is also matched by a skyscraper with similar messaging:

Wendys Real Time Ad Units Real Time

The ad takes you to the "real time" experience - which is a mix of Twitter updates, user photos and videos, Wendy's messaging, etc. It is cooler than it is effective (or even decipherable) - content is dynamic and constantly moving, but much of it is neither about Wendy's nor bacon.

Wendys Real Time Overview

When you click on a post, it expands the Twitter message and displays the user's Twitter information (allowing you to follow him / her).

Wendys Real Time Twitter User

The video experience is easier to digest and the incentives for posting are more clear: hamburgers for a year. By posting videos of your Wendy's experience, you are eligible for the contest. The UI is slick and this content clearly be reusable for other campaigns (such as on Facebook).

Wendys Real Time Video COntest

Finally, Wendy's encourages you to Talk Bacon with their Twitter account (@urBaconMeCrazy).

Wendys Lets Talk Bacon