Colonel Sanders' Birthday

Finger lickin’ memories translate to adoration as fans emulate KFC founder, Colonel Harland David Sanders. Instagram AR reigns across Europe with numbers in the thousands.

Colonel Sanders' Birthday
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The Goal

Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC), in cooperation with Yum! Brands, contracted with Simple Media to help bring awareness to Founder, Colonel Sander’s upcoming birthday. The intent was to highlight KFC’s corporate brand signature across global markets, but to do so in a fun and engaging way that would assume viral resonance and transcend typical geographical cultural conventions.

Immediately, Simple Media knew what it had to do. In order to support the brand properly, it would have to remind people what they loved about KFC in the first place—connecting with family and friends, a one-of-a-kind finger lickin’ secret recipe, and of course, Colonel Harland David Sanders.

The creative solution would need to be bold, accessible to mobile, ripe for sharing, and celebratory in nature. Naturally, it was the perfect fit for augmented reality (AR).

Answering the Challenge

Using Instagram as a vehicle, Simple Media created a fun and quirky “filter” that would cosmetically change the appearance of the user to that of none other than Colonel Sanders himself.

Using a mobile device’s front-facing camera, the filter would change the user’s hair color to white, add the Colonel’s signature goatee and glasses, and place a “fried chicken party hat” on their crown. Adding to the effect, and emphasizing the celebratory aspect to the filter, the user would also be prompted to tap their screen for an explosion of confetti.

Happy Birthday Colonel Sanders, and thanks for all the chicken!

Colonel Sanders’ Birthday

The Outcomes

The filter was a success in every market it touched. First week impressions across Italy, Russia, U.S., and Bulgaria reached slightly over sixty-seven thousand (67.1K), with an average of 38% launching the filter. 84% of these users (in Italy, Russia, and the U.S.) not only saved a photo to their device, but shared it to their Instagram stories.

In Bulgaria especially (they love KFC in Bulgaria), shares to Instagram outweighed saves by 463%.

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