By RICH KEITH
Last Spring the nation’s beef marketing organization was looking for a rancher, an athlete and a mom for their national ad campaign. Beef Councils in all 50 states submitted people for consideration. The Texas Beef Council, headquartered in Four Points, submitted photos and profiles of two of its Texas Beef Team members, Hollie Kenney and Jennifer Fisher.
Ultimately selected were the two Steiner Ranch moms and a cowboy from Oklahoma to star in the new “Above All Else” campaign.
The message aims to reach the next generation of beef eaters, those who care about food and nutrition, and how it fits into a healthy active lifestyle, according to the Texas Beef Council website.
“Hollie Kenney and Jennifer Fisher connect with our target and exemplify how beef fits into a healthy lifestyle,” says Ken Leiber, chair of the Texas Beef Council board of directors and cattle raiser from Fort Worth.
“Kenney and Fisher help showcase the core benefits that only beef offers – its great taste and 10 essential nutrients making beef superior above all else.”
“The Texas Beef Council did not tell us they were doing this,” said Kenney, who was voted among the Austin Fittest Top 10 in 2011 and is a triathlete, professional coach and a single mom. She runs Gold Star Swimming in Steiner.
“We didn’t know until the selections had been made and the ball was rolling,” Kenney said.
She recently set a goal to do 20 triathlons and to come in 3rd or better in each of them. She ultimately did 21 races because she came in 8th in a race after getting a flat tire. But she accomplished her goal, breaking two course records in the process.
Fisher is a crossfit enthusiast and distance runner with the Texas Beef Council team, and does marketing for the Zooma race. Her popular blog is The Fit Fork, which has benefitted from the exposure.
“It’s 75 percent healthy recipes and 25 percent workouts and how to live a healthy lifestyle,” said Fisher, who also recently submitted a recipe and made the final round of the 46th annual Pillsbury Bake-Off Contest.
“When I was younger I ate whatever I wanted. Now to recover after races and to feel better I add beef to our diet,” she says. Fisher says she got no complaints from husband Dean or her three kids and the Texas Beef Council helped her gain experience cooking beef in some of their outreach programs.
“I’m competing in the Pillsbury Bake-off in November,” Fisher said, noting that the last Austin winner took home over $1M in prizes.
“Either of us could have been the athlete or the mom,” Kenney admitted. Probably because of the food blog, Jennifer was tagged as the mom but she is a very good and fit athlete,” she says.
A media team from Chicago flew into Austin. The photo shoot was in Steiner. Hollie is photographed on the trails behind Rio Mesa, while Jennifer was photographed in her home kitchen.
“The makeup people said, ‘Do your own makeup and make it look natural,’ which was easy for me since I don’t use much makeup,” Kenney said. But then later the team decided to bring in the makeup artist and Kenney was appalled at how much makeup they used.
The ads are running in national magazines such as US Weekly, Self, Rachael Ray, Runners World, ESPN, Shape, Saveur, and Parents. It’s running locally in dozens of local magazines such as Austin Lifestyle magazine. And it’s online at Facebook and AllRecipes.com among many others.
“I really startled myself when I flipped to my ad in a magazine the other day,” Fisher said.
See the campaign at http://texasbeef.org/texans-featured-in-new-national-advertising-campaign/