AlwaysWoW! For a Great Great WoW in Life

Thoughts from me about things that are cool, that are WoW, that blow me away. Observations about businesses and people from a wide variety of life. Daily encounters - and thoughts outside the box, inside the box and without any box. New thinking, and challenging old thinking. Passionate about life, about respect, and about integrity.

Saturday, December 25, 2004


I am thinking about A&W - and Mack finally gave the last push to publish those thoughts. A&W always was the little guy after McDonalds and Burger King. All that I heard of as being good was their Root Beer and their - ... I forgot the name of that thing with the sausage in the middle and the sauce on top (so much for awareness) - I still like their Root Beer.

I remember the old A&W at Subang Airport and, sorry to say, the bad customer service there and the dirty surrounding of the outlet.

They have changed over the last couple of months and upgraded the premises - this was actually promised in an article in the New Straits Times in 2002 (!) where they say that " KUB Malaysia Bhd is embarking on an aggressive marketing campaign to revitalise the A&W fast food chain in a move to increase its market share of the fast-food sector by the end of the year." I am not sure if it happened but the attitude of their employees improved. Just go to the outlet at Amcorp Mall, and the moment you open the door, about four people greet you and want to take your order. The same thing is happening in their nice outlet in Alamanda Mall.

Still, and sorry to say so - the outlets have changed, the attitude of the employees might have changed, but the food still "sucks". My opinion. But no doubt - people visit the outlets and interestingly, it is an older clientel that can be seen. In the outlet at Amcorp Mall, many people seem to actually conduct meetings. I am not sure what kind of meetings, but it seems serious. Which I think is interesting. It throws up the question, what kind of market position A&W is aspiring to, how it wants to be seen, and what it thinks of its brand. I really, really wonder, if their corporate strategies include all of this, or if they try to cater to the youth segment only - and I think that in the morning, you will find many "youngsters" in the outlets (sorry the language).

And hey - look at the picture above - people are lining up, while one counter is not manned (the guy is cleaning the counter?). What impression is this giving?

Their webpage is still outdated - they talk of about 23 outlets in Malaysia as of July 2003, which is a couple of months behind us, I believe. The newest news that can be found is also from 2003. I wonder if someone in A&W is aware that they have a webpage.

It actually shows that corporate webpages are still very often seen as corporate broadcasting board - initially, touting a company's achievements. The Internet is frequently not integrated as communications tool into the corporate communications strategy. Many companies see it as part of the job of a web developer to update and maintain a webpage, and soon, it gets forgotten, and is quickly outdated. Only when companies realise that the web is different and not something to simply replicate a corporate brochure will a webpage be successful. Blogging, in fact, is even revolutionising this point of view and putting much greater strain on corporate communications. The communications department and the web developer need to work hand in hand to develop an integrated strategy that positions the company where it wants to be positioned.

Well, a rambling post, but well, that is what a blog is for, sometimes - to let rambling thoughts out.

PS: The pictures are copied from their website, without permission.


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