Timed with the debut of Rick and Morty’s fifth season, Adult Swim has once again teamed up with fast-food chain Wendy’s to offer two new show-themed drink flavors in Coca-Cola Freestyle machines found at Wendy’s locations across the US. The flavors – Mello Yello BerryJerryboree and Mello Yello Portal Time Lemon Lime – will be available from June 16th to August 22nd (when the season finale airs). Additionally, from June 18-20, Rick and Morty fans in the LA area were offered an experience at Morty’s, a restaurant pop-up at Wendy’s Panorama City featuring a show-inspired menu (Jerry’s Single, Pickle Rick Frosty, and more).
Wendy’s latest promotion follows a full-season sponsorship of Rick and Morty last year for season four. The animated duo was featured in one of the chain’s ad spots, and for season five, Wendy’s worked with the Adult Swim creative team on a new spot. WarnerMedia claims that the previous campaign was able to boost unaided awareness for Wendy’s by 88% and about 75% of Rick and Morty viewers stated that their interest in Wendy’s grew.
WarnerMedia’s Katrina Cukaj, who oversees ad sales, explained to AdAge that custom content that leverages a brand fans are passionate about is more likely to succeed because it feels authentic. “The days of not getting custom with a client are over… it’s really about bringing our clients and their brands close to the fans,” she commented.
According to Interpret’s New Media Measure®, Wendy’s continued efforts with Adult Swim have been producing results. Among Adult Swim and Cartoon Network viewers in the US, while Wendy’s does trail both Burger King and McDonald’s in terms of patronage during the past three months, the chain’s affinity index is leading these same competitors.
McDonald’s and Burger King attract 60% and 47%, respectively, of Adult Swim/Cartoon Network viewers compared to 40% for Wendy’s, but Wendy’s has an affinity index of 124 compared to 117 for Burger King and 95 for McDonald’s. That means that Adult Swim viewers are more likely than average consumers to visit Wendy’s whereas they are less likely than average consumers to order from McDonald’s.