GSD&M Wins Lion at 2019 Cannes International Festival of Creativity

Bronze Lion and two shortlists heading home to Austin for Popeyes® “12-Hour Drive-Thru”

CANNES, France, June 21, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Austin, Texas-based creatively driven, full-service ad agency, GSD&M, known for its First & Only ideas, announced today it’s bringing home a Lion. Popeyes fans drove across Texas to Louisiana for the 12-Hour Drive-Thru, and now GSD&M is picking up a Bronze Lion win in the Outdoor category for the trip home from France.

“It always means a lot to us to bring a Lion home for Austin, but especially this year for Popeyes,” GSD&M Chief Creative Officer Jay Russell said. “They’re a brand that’s not afraid to have fun, and most importantly, owns what makes them different from everybody else. The 12-Hour Drive-Thru is the epitome of First & Only and why we got into and stay in this business. We work with great brands and have a good time doing it, and every so often, we win a lion for it.”

Designed to speak to both die-hard followers and to ignite a spark in a new generation of fans, the 12-Hour Drive-Thru highlighted Popeyes signature 12-hour marination process in an exciting way by allowing fried chicken lovers to order from a stand-alone menu in Ft. Stockton, Texas, and pick it up exactly 12 hours later at the flagship Popeyes location on Canal Street in New Orleans. Free fried chicken in NOLA sounds like a win for everyone.

“It’s no secret that the brand love for Popeyes runs deep. What other brand’s fans would road trip for a free meal?” Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen Chief Marketing Officer Hope Diaz said. “When GSD&M presented the 12-Hour Drive-Thru to us, we knew it was exactly what our fans didn’t know they needed. Watching it come to life and seeing people have so much fun on the journey proved the idea was worth it.”

The wins don’t stop there. Alongside the Bronze Lion, the 12-hour Drive-Thru earned a shortlist in the Brand Experience & Activation category for brand-owned activations, and a second shortlist in the Direct category for the creative use of outdoor messaging.

“It takes a lot of dedication to marinate chicken for 12 hours, and an absolute obsession for fans to drive that far for it,” GSD&M Group Creative Director Tom Hamling said. “When most people could simply go to a drive-thru, real-life customers hopped in their cars and drove from way-out in West Texas all the way to New Orleans out of pure love for this fried chicken. Only a Popeyes fan would do that.”

Featured in publications like US Weekly, Food + Wine, The Takeout, Adweek and more, GSD&M’s take on Popeyes 12-hour marination reinforced the world’s love for authentic fried chicken. Along with this win for the 12-Hour Drive-Thru, GSD&M’s First & Only mission has racked up eight Cannes Lions wins since 2014.

About GSD&M
Founded in 1971, GSD&M is a creatively driven, full-service agency headquartered in Austin, Texas, that believes when you pay the price to understand the problem and apply that insight to solve courageously, the reward is ideas that make a difference. With a restless culture and purpose as a guiding force, GSD&M builds brands with a fully integrated creative, media and analytics approach. For more information, visit

Kelly Brody