October 26, 2021

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Cliff Freeman, Adman Who Requested, ‘The place’s the Beef?,’ Dies at 80

Cliff Freeman, Adman Who Asked, ‘Where’s the Beef?,’ Dies at 80

The Little Caesars pizza chain was one of many first accounts Mr. Freeman gained after beginning his personal company, and it remained a signature consumer for 11 years because it fought for market share in opposition to opponents like Pizza Hut and Domino’s.

“Nicely, you realize, pizza is a enjoyable product,” Mr. Freeman advised Luerzer’s Archive, an trade journal, in a 1998 interview. “Everybody sits round and eats pizza collectively, so that you’ve received to have enjoyable while you promote it. You definitely can’t deal with it critically.”

One advert Mr. Freeman devised emphasised the stretchiness of pizza cheese, to slapstick effect (a child goes on a wild journey in her excessive chair all through the home whereas holding onto a slice). In one other, a goofy employee for an unnamed rival chain tries to impress a buyer by contorting a pizza box, origami-style, into the shape of a pterodactyl (underscoring its providing of only a pizza and a field, in contrast with Little Caesars’s two pizzas for one low value).

These commercials helped elevate gross sales of Little Caesars 138 % from 1988 to 1993. Nonetheless, after gross sales flattened and Little Caesars thought of altering advert companies, Mr. Freeman ended his firm’s association with the chain in 1998.

Over time, Mr. Freeman’s company gained many Clio Awards for promoting excellence. It gained for commercials created for shoppers like Little Caesars, Philips and Outpost.com, and for a sequence of adverts for Fox Sports activities’ Nationwide Hockey League protection that demonstrated how basketball, bowling, billiards and golf can be higher in the event that they have been performed extra bodily, like hockey.

Neal Tiles, a advertising government for Fox Sports activities, told The New York Times in 1998 that ithad chosen Mr. Freeman’s company as a result of it took “inventive dangers in a strategic manner” on so many campaigns.

However Cliff Freeman & Companions lasted solely 11 extra years. Amid a recession, government turmoil and consumer departures, it shut down in 2009.

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