DoorDash hits the airwaves with first national ad campaign
- DoorDash will launch its first national television advertising campaign called “Delicious at Your Door," the company announced today. The ads begin with a shot of the DoorDash app on a mobile phone, featuring Wendy’s, The Cheesecake Factory, IHOP and Chipotle — a few of the delivery service’s most notable partners.
- Created by agency M/H VCCP and directed by Greg and Lio, a duo known for their colorful, patterned commercials and music videos, the package includes a six, 15 and 30-second spot. Each highlights the DoorDash brand with a series of opening doors that lead to semi-surrealist rooms outside wordly physical bounds but rooted in quintessentially human settings, such as a chaotic living room and a busy office.
- Starting today, the campaign will run on broadcast, digital, social and out-of-home channels through March 31. Local television feeds will showcase “city fan favorites,” the press release said, including Portillo’s in Chicago and Mendocino Farms in Los Angeles.
DoorDash starts the new year in a promising position with a $4 billion valuation and business in 3,000 cities, according to a company release. That’s impressive on its face, but it’s more impressive considering the company went live in 2013.
Delivery now accounts for 3% of all restaurant sales, but third-party services fulfill only 13% of those orders, per research from NPD. A majority of orders happen through digital channels — up from about a quarter in 2012 — and as those numbers grow, the major players in the third-party space have upped the ante to compete.
Uber, better known for its pioneering rideshare, has pursued expansion around the world rather in the U.S., but it has aired a few TV spots to attract attention to Uber Eats — especially to announce big-name partners including McDonald’s. Grubhub has responded by focusing on local restaurants and the broad reach of its 80,000 partners, predominantly in the U.S. Postmates, meanwhile, has unleashed edgier campaigns, such as the “Better than Your Boyfriend” commercial and snappy print ads in New York City. Even EatStreet, a delivery service based in Madison, Wisconsin, tried a national ad campaign in 2017, with spots airing on TV, Pandora, Spotify and FM radio.
Commercials for both Grubhub and Postmates have featured the delivery person fairly prominently, whereas Uber Eats and now DoorDash seem to draw attention to recognizable restaurants. The spots built for DoorDash’s first national campaign reach beyond the typical scenes of customer, app and branded delivery bag and into a whimsical world where gravity doesn’t exist but people can still order from DoorDash.
Because it won’t just air on TV, it’s tough to say how much the ad's timing — launching just before the Super Bowl — plays into its strategy. Fox Sports reported that 48 million Americans would eat pizza on Super Bowl Sunday in 2017, with Domino’s delivery drivers logging 4 million miles. DoorDash told Forbes it saw a 16% spike that day, but sports bars cite 34% jumps on a typical Sunday. The following year, Pizza Hut hit a digital sales record of $12 million during the big game, according to CNBC.
The DoorDash press release doesn’t mention sports at all, perhaps purposely to separate DoorDash from Uber Eats, which featured an unaffiliated sports fan in its McDonald’s spot. Regardless of whether or not the campaign's launch is tied to the upcoming ball game, the campaign's bright aesthetic and inclusion of beloved restaurant brands could help differentiate it from its most serious competitors.