This is a fantastic PR/word of mouth stunt: The press coverage has been fantastic, everyone will be talking about it, and it address economic issues without being a downer.
There is a definite overlap between sophisticated word of mouth marketing programs and a PR stunt. You know your PR is good if it has great word of mouth appeal: Reporters want to write the story AND everyone else wants to repeat it.
Here is the letter they sent to mayors:
March 25, 2009
It is estimated that U.S. roads are riddled with more than 350 million potholes nationwide that’s one for every man, woman and child in America! Because of long, harsh winters and heavy traffic, cities everywhere are left with more potholes than ever. Add in the fact that asphalt is an expensive product, and the cost of those repairs is higher than ever.
Because of the financially tough times, many cities are delaying construction projects because they need to spend money patching these potholes instead. Some cities are even being forced to cut back on road services and maintenance crews. We at KFC understand that filling every one of these potholes is important and we’re here to help!
In honor of our “Fresh Tastes Best” campaign, we want to come and Re-“Fresh” your roads! The Colonel and his crew are on a mission to help out America and sponsor your city’s “Fresh”ly repaired roads. Every patched pothole comes with the Colonel’s very own stamp of approval.
KFC has been bringing communities together over buckets of chicken for more than 50 years. We invite you and your city to become a part of a new tradition and accept our offer to Re-“Fresh” your roads. Together, we can give your community a much needed break and help keep America moving.
President of KFC