Jack Astor’s billboards inspired by Drake and ‘food babies’

A couple of weeks we ago, we talked a little bit about the flurry of playful marketing moves by brands looking to join the popular conversation about Drake’s new album.

For the most part, the social marketing teams were meme’ing Certified Lover Boy‘s unusual album cover by awkwardly putting some kind of brand slant on the image of rows of pregnant women emojis.

But this week, Jack Astor’s took the idea a step further by putting up CLB-inspired billboards in Toronto’s Yonge-Dundas Square.

As the most billboard-y place in Canada, there was naturally a billboard promoting Drake’s new album already there. Jack Astor’s and its new creative agency of record, The Garden, worked quickly to create their own meme-like version to capture and redirect some of the hype being generated by the 6 God while his billboard was still up.

Instead of the pregnant women emojis, the Jack Astor’s billboard features rows of winking women emojis eating a burger and fries. Their bellies are large, but they aren’t pregnant. The accompanying headline reads: “Certified Food Baby.” The billboard promotes the revamped Jack Astors location opening at the Square One mall this “Scorpio Szn”—another reference to Drake, aka OVO, or October’s Very Own. The billboards went up this week—with Cairns Oneil handling the media—and will stay up to match the buy of the actual Drake billboard.

Drake’s album has been a hot topic among young people this fall, said Lindsay Eady, creative director at The Garden, in a release. “We’re getting in on the hype by co-opting the biggest album drop of the year to get people equally pumped about the drop of the new Jack’s.”

The revamped location in Square One will be the first to feature a complete identity rebrand and restaurant redesign developed by The Garden.

“This campaign is about tapping into a major social moment to create excitement around the launch of our new brand positioning,” said Anesie Johnson, vice-president of marketing at SirCorp., parent company of Jack Astor’s. “This past year we have taken the time to identify and redefine the Jack’s experience and get back to the irreverent humour that made Jack’s famous.”

David Brown