JWI 518 Branding and Omnichannel Marketing

Branding and Omnichannel Marketing

Use the Wall Street Journal menu link to find a recent article related to branding or omnichannel marketing. Alternatively, your source may be any other business periodical (e.g., Forbes, BusinessWeek, The Economist) with an article that contains relevant information.

Provide a link or reference to the article. Then respond to the prompts below:

  • Briefly summarize the key ideas discussed in the article
  • Do your own experiences as a customer reinforce or challenge the ideas in the article?
  • How do the ideas from this article apply to your company or workplace?
  • Is the challenge of brand alignment across channels covered in this article?
    • If so, describe how it is discussed and explain its relevance
    • If not, should it have been included in the discussion? Why or why not?

Post your initial response by Wednesday, midnight of your time zone, and reply to at least 2 of your classmates’ initial posts by Sunday, midnight of your time zone.​

1st response


Chosen article: KFC suspends its ‘finger lickin’ good’ slogan because of coronavirus.

Kentucky Fried Chicken has never strayed from weird, off-beat, and sometimes even absurd advertising campaigns and marketing initiatives. In 2018, British KFC locations ran into a supply and delivery issue that caused them to run out of chicken temporarily. They ran print ads with the bucket photoshopped to include the work “FCK,” followed up by a message of apology for the shortage (Huff, 1). In addition to print, they incorporated videos into social media channels that featured drive through video clips of angry customers yelling at workers. KFC has been one of the biggest contenders in the fast-food space (in addition to Taco Bell and Burger King) when it comes to outlandish marketing efforts. After COVID took the world by storm, we are living in a new environment. KFC took note of this and (after 64 years) is temporarily suspending the use of its tagline “Finger-Lickin Good”(CNN, 2). The decision was premiered on YouTube and accompanied by a statement from KFC’s GCMO: Catherine Tan-Gillespie. Although a marketing tactic it takes a direct and poignant approach to address today’s challenges.

Brands everywhere are figuring out (some for the first time) whether they should get involved in the happenings of the world: morally, politically, or otherwise. What is more, is that consumers are focused more than ever on whether a company (or CEO of said company) is fully morale in their own right, but additionally, what actionable steps that brand is taking to make good on the stance (Asare, 3). As public perception changes, so must inclusion policies, leadership cultures, and marketing to communicate it back to the public. Although KFC is known for being a little cheeky, is it good enough in 2020 to push a marketing campaign for a quick chuckle without showing ”the receipts” of company wide-initiatives to support it? Where is the line that puts a brand’s alignment in jeopardy? For this specifically: What is KFC doing to keep its” workers safe in light of the pandemic they are marketing to?

Customers today have near-constant access to all of their favorite brands, making brand alignment not only harder to keep consistent, but ultimately serves as more places to get called out for it—directly by your customers. Selection is key when developing an Onmi-channel Strategy. By focusing a message consistent with values and mission, and targeting channels where your audience is, you can have slightly more control over the narrative. That is until the message no longer aligns with your brand.


  1. Amatulli, J. (2018). KFC Says ”FCK” In Full-Page Ad Apologizing For Chicken Shortage. Huff Post.
  2. Valinsky, J. (2020). KFC suspends its ‘finger lickin’ good’ slogan because of coronavirus. CNN Business
  3. Janice Gassam Asare. (2020). Dear Companies: Your BLM Posts Are Cute But We Want To See Policy Change. Forbes



Good Evening Dr. Crispin and Fellow Classmates:

When thinking about an article to write about for this week’s discussion question I looked at multiple business sources until I discovered the article that I felt I could relate to the most. I have found within this course the best way to answer the questions that are being presented to us is to not just think about our answer as marketers but as the customer as well. So, I chose an article about Walmart’s performance during this pandemic. This article caught my eye because I thought about when the pandemic began and how I me and my fiancé thought it would be okay to go to the store that Friday evening before the “quarantine” was officially to start and all I could do was laugh while in Walmart because there was nothing to get. We needed up having to divide and conquer, he was at one Walmart across town and I was at the other talking to each other reporting when each store had on didn’t have.

  • Briefly summarize the key ideas discussed in the article.
    • The article written by the Wall Street Journal in May of this year, and addresses how Walmart is one of the few companies that has been able to not just survive throughout the pandemic but increased their overall revenue globally by 8.4%. Nassauer the author of the article goes into detail about how the super center was already one of the top competitors within the global marketplace due to ease of being able to purchase their products either online or within the store. However, after the pandemic hit they were able to capitalize on their online presence, and add additional services such as delivery and contactless pick-up to enhance their appeal to their customers. Another key reason Walmart was able to remain relevant is because in some cases they were the only store open to the public, and somewhat remain stocked.
  • Do your own experiences as a customer reinforce or challenge the ideas in the article?
    • In reading this article without doing any research I knew the information the author was providing was accurate, because I am one of the individuals she is writing about. With being quarantined and having to change my way of life to remain safe, online shopping became the norm for my household.
  • How do the ideas from this article apply to your company or workplace?
    • Within my line of work and helping to house homeless veterans, we really didn’t have to focus on our branding or omni channels to promote our services. Word of mouth was enough for us to maintain the number of people we serve in the Metro Atlanta area, if anything the number the of individuals that we service had quadrupled and my caseload is higher than it has ever been.
  • Is the challenge of brand alignment across channels covered in this article? 
    • If so, describe how it is discussed and explain its relevance
    • If not, should it have been included in the discussion? Why or why not?
    • Within the article it does speak on the advantages of being an omnichannel company, and although the article addresses some of the obstacles they faced when strategizing about how to remain open during they pandemic they do not go into detail about the challenges of brand alignment across channels. However, I don’t believe the article needed to address the obstacles of brand alignment across channels, because the article was able to point out the success of omni channeling. It’s my opinion that the article focusing to the success of Walmart peeks the interest of business minded individuals and they can or already know that there were several challenges in being able to manage omni channeling and brand alignment for a company of that magnitude.




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