What's Eating Jdavies?

and other marketing stories

KFC's Chicken BBQ


I ordered my third chicken java rice for the week 2 days ago at the KFC branch near Sulo Hotel (Sulu?). Like most people who enjoy new things, the crispy chicken barbeque is a novelty for me for now and that makes me order it again and again. I had the first 2 orders delivered, and as expected the BBQ sauce is placed in separate containers.

The ones I ordered for take out (to go) at the KFC near Sulo Hotel is another story. Unlike the previous orders, they had the sauce poured all over the chicken bbq sticks. That got me asking for the manager. Don't get me wrong, I wasn't mad. I am just a bit surprised that they do it that way, knowing I'd take it out of the store.

I told the manager the crispiness might be affected (not to mention it having too much sauce than I might be needing, spilled sauce on the stick, etc) I asked if it's a store policy or a company-wide direction. She said "Yes". She further explained that the policy differs from delivery to in-store purchases. Somebody from KFC confirm this. Is it because I pay a premium for delivery purchases? If the logic is travel time degrades food quality, shouldn't the same argument hold for take outs?

I was then told it was a cost-cutting measure. Oh... Now we're talking.

Cost-cutting? I did pay didn't I? If the product managers deemed it better to not take note of such small details to save on plastic cups, the least they can do is ask the customer if one would want the sauce poured on or separated. One small marketing-led script would do fine. I'm sure a little due diligence on their part would have sufficed. I would even if praise them for that.

If their sales and costs projections didn't go as expected, is that the customer's fault? I'm not being a hard customer here. It's just that while, I understand there are things they should adjust in the product - but at least don't run the product testing on paying customers. Or don't release something not up to par. It's called Corporate Social Responsibility. CSR is not just about donations and support for humanitarian causes or support for environmental causes - at the minimum it is about a good product worth the price. Most companies forgot that.

Benefit of the doubt: Perhaps not so many people complain about having the sauce poured in. Well, I do. Statistics will matter, but customer service matters more. It doesn't matter if I'm the only one complaining about the food. Some people will even go as far as saying, "well don't buy from a fast food if you complain on such matters that are for restaurants to notice." Fast food shouldn't mean a degraded food quality, it's just served fast. For anyone to take anything short of that is crazy. At the end of the day, I relayed my concern to the manager and told her to ensure that this concern is addressed in their next meeting. They better.

Next time I order I'll check if they did something good already.


posted by Jdavies @ 6/30/2006,


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The Author


Jdavies lives in Quezon City, Philippines and has been blogging since 2002. A brand manager in a leading technology company and a freelance new media/web strategy consultant, he has refocused his blogging from personal, political & sociological observations, to marketing-related efforts and Internet trends that are relevant to his career and branding advocacies.

About This Blog

This blog is a depot of thoughts and observations on marketing trends which remain personally relevant to the Author as far as his marketing career is concerned. Having evolved from the personal blog of Jdavies, much of the earlier work contained herein are laced with personal speculation, political views, and similar advocacies. These posts are being kept for posterity's sake and for no other reason. No effort is being made to claim that the author will not contradict himself from his previous positions or that such advocacies are absolute.


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