June 12, 2019
The partnership is a first for Hardee’s, and it’s one that could help the venerable, 59-year-old hamburger stands to reach consumers, particularly families, in an entirely new way, CNN reported on June 11.
The meals being introduced will include four exclusive, new toys from Ryan’s World, a brand of toys. Later this summer, toys animated YouTube show, HobbyKids Adventures, also will be distributed via the meals.
YouTube is an important channel for Hardee’s. “Our consumers are digital-first,” Jenna Folk, Hardee’s director of Brand Marketing, told CNN Business. “We want to connect with them where they are.” She added that the video platform in particular is “an exciting space for us.”
The burger chain stopped selling its Star Pals kids’ meals eight years ago. But since then it has noticed an increase in families eating at quick-service restaurant chains, Folk said. She cited a University of Connecticut study that found that in 2016, 91% of parents said they had purchased lunch or dinner for their kids at a major fast food chain—up from 79% in 2010.
The return of the kids’ meal could encourage parents to choose Hardee’s. And the brand is hoping a collaboration with family-friendly YouTubers will make the meal even more attractive.
Ryan will feature the four toys on his YouTube channel, Folk said. The Hardee’s Star Pals kids’ meals, which include a choice of chicken tenders or a burger, plus an optional side and drink and start at $3.99 per meal, will become available for purchase next week. The toys will also be available in kids meals from Carl’s Jr., which has the same parent company as Hardee’s.
Research contact: @Hardees