Denny's harnesses power of viral sensation in new ad

US diner chain turns viral Facebook video into online spot.

Denny’s has turned a viral internet sensation into an online ad, harnessing the power of social media to drive brand awareness in a heart-warming new spot.

The US diner-style chain tracked down a father, comedian DJ Pryor, who appeared in a viral Facebook post with his 19-month-old son Kingston, for the campaign.

The spot features the pair, from Tennessee, spending quality time together over a meal at Denny's. It was posted to coincide with Father’s Day on 16 June and has been watched almost 44,000 times on YouTube and "liked" 73,800 times on Twitter.

It was created by EP & Co, based in Greenville, South Carolina.

In the original Facebook video, which has been viewed more than a million times since it was posted on 9 June, Pryor and Kingston are seen having a full-blown conversation about a sports game on TV. Even though Kingston cannot yet talk properly, he babbles clearly in response to his father throughout.

Denny’s harnessed that approach in the new film, which features the two having a "conversation" about the child’s favourite cartoon over pancakes and bacon.

"We knew immediately we wanted to hear more and invited both father and son to continue their conversation over a meal in a booth at Denny’s," Denny's chief marketing officer John Dillon said.

"This video captures what we’re all about at Denny’s – our commitment to feed people’s bodies, minds and souls by bringing people together over a great meal."

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