From Finger Lickin’ Good To Not So Good

by Paul Simister on February 25, 2011

I was shocked to read the other day that KFC, the fast food giant that used to be known as Kentucky Fried Chicken is to change its slogan from “Finger Lickin’ Good” which is distinctive to “So Good” which is bland and boring.

finger lickin' good

(Photo from

Even worse, So Good can apply to anything and could be used by anybody.

It doesn’t convey any kind of interesting message at all.

According to KFC, this is a good thing as it can move attention away from the food (mmm) to new areas like their staff. Evidently “finger lickin’ good” is too food-centric according to Martin Shuker, chief executive of KFC UK and Ireland.

The master-plan is to reposition KFC as offering healthier food options.

It’s good that the food is getting better for you as it is scandalous how bad a lot of food is but at least fried chicken and chips never made any health related claims.

The old KFC’s catchphrase came about by accident in the 1950s when a US TV advert showed franchisee David Harman licking his fingers after eating some chicken.

A viewer phoned to complain and manager Ken Harbough, justified the action by saying ‘Well it’s finger lickin’ good.

What do you think?

Is KFC making a mistake replacing “finger lickin’ good” with “so good”?

And if change is needed, can you think of a better, more appropriate slogan?

Paul Simister is a differentiation coach who helps small business owners to profit from differentiating their businesses, being distinctive in the eyes of their customers and standing out in a crowded marketplace.

You too can move past your profit tipping point by answering the seven big questions of business success.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Stacey Cavanagh October 5, 2011 at 10:21 pm

I know this post is 9 months old now but I honestly had no idea they’d changed their slogan. How utterly disappointing. Such a dull slogan… wonder how much they paid someone to come up with that.

By the way – your dog is adorable!


Paul Simister October 6, 2011 at 6:31 am

Thanks for your comment Stacey. Every time I see the KFC advert on TV and they end with “so good” I am reminded of how bland it is. Flinger lickin’ good said KFC to me. So good could be anything.

The word association with slogans should work both ways around – from brand name to slogan and from slogan to brand name. The original KFC slogan was very distinctive and they owned the phrase in the mind of the market. I can’t see it happening with so good.


Sally Roberts November 19, 2011 at 8:46 pm

yes, very disappointing for me. absolutely no originality in “so good”.


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