Chipotle Mexican Grill as the Scarecrow.

Chipotle Mexican Grill is leading the modern fast food chain restaurant movement. At a mass scale, it is showing how great customer service, good-looking and clean restaurants, and healthy, responsibly sourced, and prepared-to-order food can attract customers.

As Chipotle CMO Mark Crumpacker puts it, “Chipotle is on a mission to change the way world thinks about and eats fast food.”

A big part of Chipotle’s ethos is an attention to how it selects its food. It takes pride in serving responsibly raised beef, pork and chicken—meaning that it only buys its meat from non-caged/penned animals fed an additive-free, vegetarian diet, and who are never given antibiotics.

And, they believe that the more you know about where your food comes from, and what it takes to produce it, the more likely you are to take care in seeking out food that is raised responsibly.

So, they’ve created a film, and a mobile game that tells the Chipotle story, and teaches us how most fast food is farmed, and how Chipotle has found a better, healthier, more socially and globally conscious way of sourcing the food we eat.

Put to the music (by Fiona Apple) from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, “Pure Imagination,” the film and game use Scarecrows to represent the caretakers of good food, and black crows to represent the companies who care more about profit than social good. We see cows in cages, and chickens stuffed with antibiotics, before we see the scarecrows breaking free from evil and starting their own healthy food company.

It is pure branded edutainment and some of the best marketing work I can remember. Like the Apple 1984 campaign which depicted the evil of IBM and how things could be different, Chiptole’s “Scarecrow” marketing could become the next game-changing marketing campaign—just replace IBM with McDonalds and Apple with Chipotle, and you’ve got an iconic campaign in the making.

Take a look at the film, and watch the terrific Behind the Scenes video that tells the whole story of why and how the fil was created.

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