Long the punching bag of Jon Stewart, one would think Arby’s would have been quietly doing the happy dance come Jon’s last show. Certainly wouldn’t have been bothered to say good-bye to him.
Fortunately, they did just the opposite and created a supercut of some of Jon’s most unkind words about the chain and aired it during one of his last shows. With the Golden Girls theme song, “Thank You For Being a Friend” playing in the background, it made for the perfect farewell to a true “frenemy.”
While Arby’s may likely never score points for its good-for-you food, they clearly scored some points in the marketing department, through their humor and willingness to embrace Jon’s insults with style. These qualities and the tribute ad that resulted got them a lot of great mileage in the press.
REALITY CHECK: It is refreshing to see a brand not recoil or fight back against insults lobbed at them, and instead, turn them into a positive. Very nicely played. Could your brand do it?