Dairy Queen Ads Said To Melt Among Younger Set


Having just launched a new marketing campaign (in advance of the summer ice cream season), Dairy Queen may be having a bit of trouble resonating with the younger demographic.  

According to YouGov BrandIndex, the commercials, which feature a man playing a guitar that makes dolphin screeches (and touts a cheeseburger promotion), buzz among 18- to-34-year-olds. During the period from March 9 to March 24, when the ad was in heavy rotation during the NCAA Basketball Tournament, the brand's buzz score -- which measures a positive vs. negative response to a brand -- dropped from a high of 44.1 (on a scale of -100 to 100, with 0 being neutral) to 17.3 on March 24.

"Among 18- to-34-year-olds, it starts out high, and then around March 9, it starts to dip," YouGov global managing director Ted Marzilli tells Marketing Daily. "That is continuing -- 18- to-24-year-olds seem to be reacting negatively."



Among 35- to-49-year-olds, Dairy Queen's buzz initially increased, from 20.7 on March 9 to 40 on March 18, but has since dropped to 27.6, according to YouGov. The campaign has taken hold among Boomers (those 50+), where buzz increased from 24.1 on March 9 to its current score of 31.

However, Dairy Queen's current buzz is not far off last year's score. In fact, Marzilli says, it's slightly up over previous years. Overall, the company's buzz score for March 2011 is only slightly lower than it was in 2010, though still down from a peak in 2009, he says.

Still, Dairy Queen's buzz tracks with -- but is slightly higher than -- the overall ice cream sector, which includes Baskin Robbins, Cold Stone Creamery and Friendly's as well as DQ.

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