Hard to believe, but it’s been more than 10 years since the “Hot Dog Legs” meme for sprang up on an obscure Tumblr (in January 2013). Better late than never, Oscar Mayer is now jumping on the bandwagon with the launch of a leggy social media and out-of-home campaign.
Are they hot dogs, or are they legs? That’s been the question since the beginning of the meme, which actually started with a bathtub shot but is often depicted poolside.
The new campaign, from agency Johannes Leonardo, features pool as well as backyard shots. “This summer, all legs are Oscar Mayer,” the ads say—along with the hashtag #HotDogsForLegs.
The OOH ads are going up in Huntington Beach, Los Angeles, as well as around Chicago and on the Chicago lakefront. Mobile boat billboards will prowl the Miami and Fort Lauderdale coasts in Florida.
The meme, of course, has always lived primarily in social (there are more than 9 billion “Hot Dog Legs” video views on TikTok alone, per Oscar Mayer), and JL will be looking in social in the coming weeks for imagery to use in future executions.
“For more than a decade, every summer, legs that look suspiciously like hot dogs have shown up on everybody’s social feed, obscuring otherwise picturesque views,” said Nathan Frank, group creative director at Johannes Leonardo. “This summer, Oscar Mayer is proving once and for all that Hot Dog Legs will eternally be considered Oscar Mayer.”
“Oscar Mayer is excited to finally give the #HotDogsOrLegs debate the spotlight it deserves,” added Kelsey Rice, associate director, Oscar Mayer Brand Communications. “A natural extension of our ‘Keep It Oscar’ brand program, this activation brings the fun of Oscar Mayer to life—celebrating legs that look like hot dogs and Oscar Mayer’s delicious meats.”