Hardee’s Launches iPhone App to Help Guys Mouth Off

French teachers across the Southeast and Midwest may either collectively breathe a sigh of relief or roll their eyes when they hear about a new campaign from Hardee’s promoting its French Dip Thickburger.

Hardee’s hopes the mobile video campaign, an iPhone application called the “Parisian Pick Up,” will further endear itself to the “young, hungry guys” that frequent its locations, even while acknowledging that the app itself might be a bit ridiculous.

“It’s a simple party trick we think our audience will have fun with,” said Matt Jarvis, partner at marketing group 72andSunny, which created the application.

The hungry guys that Hardee’s has its eye on are men 18 to 34.

When using Parisian Pick Up, these men choose a mouth image and hold the iPhone up to their face. The mouth then says various phrases in French (with subtitles) or a “swarthy” French accent to pick up women, insult friends or — of course — ask for a discount at Hardee’s.

These phrases include gems like, “It is a good thing I am an explosives expert, yes? Since you are quite obviously ze bom.” And also, “Your lips look so lonely. Perhaps they would like to meet mine?”

The campaign also features a coupon and other surprises for those who actually use the app to order the French Dip Thickburger at Hardee’s.

The app became available last week and is the latest chapter in a new digital campaign at the company, says Brad Rosenberg, manager of digital strategy and marketing at Hardee’s.

The restaurant’s iBurger was its first iPhone application. It launched earlier this year and is what Rosenberg describes as a very basic app that allows users to virtually eat a burger and make “chomping, eating sounds.” Users can also tap it with an iPod touch to virtually eat.

After the iBurger, the company turned to YouTube to draw attention to its Biscuit Holes and its Name Our Holes campaign. Users can go to nameourholes.com and, as the name implies, suggest a name for Hardee’s Biscuit Holes. Hardee’s then sends back a spot to the user that includes the suggested name.

Rosenberg says the company’s digital marketing strategy is evolving with this latest app. “The really fun aspect of it is when you engage someone else. That’s the natural progression,” Rosenberg said. “And it will hopefully be fun to see people walk into the restaurant and have the iPhone place the order for them.”

72andSunny’s Jarvis also says the firm has several projects in development and that mobile marketing will be part of most any future campaign for Hardee’s and sister chain Carl’s Jr.

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