The fine folks at Carl's Jr. & Hardee's have given their website a very cool makeover that the FPT staff recommends you visit and check out the cool stuff. What we liked the most was depending on what time of day you visit the site - the food on the table changes. For example if you visit in the morning you see breakfast foods and in the evening you see dinner.
Here is the official press release:
Burger Lovers Can Now Customize Site and Interact With Virtual Roommates
CARPINTERIA, Calif. – Oct. 1, 2008 – Carl's Jr. and Hardee's have again transformed the way fans can bond with their burgers and each other. Both brands re-launched their Web sites this week with an updated look, expanded interactivity and new customer loyalty program.
The sites, carlsjr.com and hardees.com, feature an enhanced "young, hungry guy's" dream bachelor pad, starting with a virtual, 3D living room landing page and a large, flat-screen TV playing Carl's Jr. and Hardee's latest television ads. A library of some of the brands' hottest historical ads is also accessible. Site visitors can now select a virtual roommate who will interact with them each time they login to the site. And because we all know guys like gaming, the site allows visitors to sign up for the "Burger Slayer" loyalty program, earning points that can be used to customize the look of the living room and eventually unlock "hottie" roommate options and other brand fan freebies.
"When we first partnered with Spacedog Interactive, now part of Mendelsohn-Zien Advertising, to design and launch state-of-the art Web sites for both Carl's Jr. and Hardee's in 2005, the sites were unlike anything anyone was doing in the industry because they focused more on an aspirational lifestyle for our 'young, hungry guy' customers," said Brad Haley, executive vice president of marketing for Carl's Jr. and Hardee's restaurants. "But since that time, others have copied our approach - in some cases very closely, indeed - so we wanted to regain our leadership with revamped sites that take the virtual living room environment and the overall brand interaction potential to a whole new level. The new 3D capability and full live-action video capability will also allow us to do cool things like have special guests, including hot new bands, make exclusive appearances on the sites in the future."
The living room landing page has been updated with 3D modeling as well as real-time day-to-night transitions. On the coffee table: a full meal from Carl's Jr. or Hardee's, which changes depending on the time of day visitors log on - as does the scene outside the window. The sites were designed by the digital division of Mendelsohn-Zien Advertising, formerly operated as digital design and marketing firm, Spacedog Interactive. Mendelsohn-Zien is the Los Angeles-based agency known for creating the brands' edgy, iconic advertising campaigns.
Visitors to the Carl's Jr. and Hardee's Web sites can also explore and interact in 3D thanks to a partnership with ExitReality. The technology allows users to experience the traditional, 2-dimensional sites as 3-dimensional spaces and even convert their profile pages on social network platforms, such as MySpace and Facebook, into 3D environments. The ExitReality 3D component is available to download on the Carl's Jr. and Hardee's sites.
In conjunction with the launch of these new sites, CKE Restaurants has partnered with Lionsgate for a promotion in support of their recent theatrical release "My Best Friend’s Girl". Consumers visiting the Carls'Jr. or Hardee's sites can click on the movie poster in their virtual living room and enter the "Shave an Eyebrow for Love" contest for the chance to win $1,000. The site will serve as a platform to promote other such partnerships in the future. Movie clips are able to be viewed on the site's flat-screen TV.
Aside from the new and improved interactivity, consumers looking for nutritional information or restaurant location will be able to easily navigate and access the information. Since the sites were created using the Ruby on Rails framework, the information is easily updated and can be customized for visitors wanting to gather nutritional information for each menu item or an entire meal.