Smithfield Foods is announcing the launch of a new brand platform for hot dog brand Nathan’s Famous. The new Nathan’s Famous platform celebrates the 100% beef hot dog’s deep roots in New York and features a talking hot dog that brings plenty of New York attitude to the table. The campaign was developed with adam&eveDDB New York, which was named the Creative Agency of Record for Nathan’s Famous and Eckrich brands in November 2023. Smithfield Foods is the exclusive licensee of the Nathan’s Famous retail business. 

“Our goal is to take Nathan’s Famous to a whole new level with a new platform: ‘100% Beef, 100% New York.’ This exciting new work emphasizes our commitment to using 100% beef in our hot dogs, while paying homage to our 100+ year New York heritage,” said Lauren Talbert, senior director of marketing at Smithfield Foods.

The Nathan’s Famous brand and adam&eveDDB partnership extends beyond advertising. Together, they have also redesigned Nathan’s Famous’ mascot, Frankie. Reinvigorated with a fresh personality, the modernized version of Frankie has already made appearances at Hot Dog Eating Qualifier events, building anticipation for the upcoming Hot Dog Eating Contest on July 4 in Coney Island, N.Y. Moving forward, Frankie will be featured across the brand's social channels, representing its updated image for the modern consumer.

Angela Cheng, Nathan’s Famous brand manager at Smithfield Foods, said, “We’re using our New York roots to refresh the brand, and that includes Frankie. We’ve always been an iconic New York brand, but now we’re showing up in more modern ways – celebrating Nathan’s great taste, appealing to people all across the country, and catching people’s attention with our talking hot dog and our mascot, Frankie, who’s full of personality and showing up in surprising ways.”

The new Nathan’s Famous campaign kicks off with two ads: the first, a 30-second spot titled “Beef,” and the second, a 15-second spot titled “Mustard.” Both showcase the New York “born and bunned” personality of the 100% beef hot dog while celebrating the brand’s heritage in a contemporary way.

New Nathan's Famous campaign.pngThe Nathan's Famous brand launches a new campaign highlighting "100% Beef, 100% New York." Courtesy of Smithfield Foods Inc.  

Jason Ashlock, executive creative director at adam&eveDDB New York, said, “When it comes to hot dogs, it doesn’t get more iconic than Nathan’s Famous. They’re part of the fabric of New York, and stubborn like a true New Yorker, their recipe hasn’t changed in 100 years. That’s really what inspired the new platform.” Ashlock said, “For us, there was no better spokesperson than the hot dog itself. We just had to figure out how to make it talk with a New York accent. It was such a fun character to create—both brash and endearing. A real bite of New York.”

Mitch Horton, head of design at adam&eveDDB New York, said, “We wanted the new look of Nathan’s Famous to match its icon status. Graphic, bold typography. A classic color palette inspired by its New York history but modernized. Stickers that highlight brand benefits. It’s a tightly designed collage of elements, just like you’d see walking down the streets of New York City. And of course there’s our illustrated hot dog mascot – Frankie. He’s been with the brand for a while, but we’ve redesigned him for today.”

The spots were directed by filmmaker Pete Marquis, who’s known for his work with Tubi’s "Interface Interruption" for Super Bowl 57, McDonald’s "Menu Song" featuring Lil Yachty and Coors Light "Bear" featuring Patrick Mahomes.

The yearlong campaign will launch in late May 2024 via a multichanneled approach across TVC, OLV, social, programmatic and audio.

Source: Smithfield Foods Inc.