Brave marketing. It’s something we all talk about. “We want to be braver”. “Let’s push the boundaries”. However, when it comes to fruition we’re all guilty of holding back and staying in our comfort zones because let’s face it, nothing bad can happen there. But nothing great can either.
Then, there’s Burger King. Perhaps Troll King or King of Upsetting McDonalds Through Creative Marketing Campaigns would suit them better? The international burger chain rivalry has provided much entertainment in the digital age, with Burger King absolutely not holding back on using McDonald’s to leverage their own sales. Read on for our favourites.
This is the campaign that’s driven us to write this blog post. Boundaries are clearly not in the marketing teams vocabulary, and ‘advertising rules’ are a thing of the past. Burger King has launched its ‘Mouldy Whopper’ campaign, which literally shows a mouldy Whopper, up close, and it doesn’t exactly make us want to run and buy one.
However, the messaging behind this campaign is to highlight that they are dropping all artificial preservatives because real food tastes better. Showing a time-lapse of a Whopper being consumed by mould over the course a month is to highlight that all of their ingredients are natural. Extremely clever really.
But where’s the dig at McDonald’s? Well, the fast-food chain has been scrutinised in the past over its food after a photo emerged of a Maccies Burger and Fries looking good as new, 6 years later.
I’ve thought long and hard about this one, and I’ve come to the decision that I would now choose Burger King over a McDonalds knowing that my food will actually digest.
Burn That Ad
Ok so for this one they didn’t just troll McDonald’s, they trolled all competitor fast food chains and used AR to do so. Burger King created a series of billboards, which were blurred out competitor ads. They then encouraged people to log in to the burger king app, point their camera at the ad, and watch it go up in flames to reveal a Burger King ad and receive a free Whopper.
Quite literally, burn.
A personal favourite is the whopper detour, a campaign to promote the re-launch of the Burger King app with the new pre-order function.
Now, this one was a personal attack on McDonald’s, as Burger King geo-fenced a load of McD’s locations across the country. If anyone with the BK app went inside the geo-fence (so near the competing restaurant), they unlocked a Whopper for a penny and were redirected to the closest Burger King.
McDonalds got s(w)erved.
Birthdays Should Be Happy
Ever have a birthday party at McDonald’s where Ronald McDonald would show his face? Notice how a few friends couldn’t make that party and always wondered why? Ronald was why.
Burger King played this to their advantage and used a series of photos of terrified children with clowns to promote their own birthday parties. The photos were simply overlaid with the copy “Birthdays Should Be Happy” and prompted the audience to speak to a manager about booking a clown-free party. Savage.
Ghost of McDonald’s
And finally an oldie but goldie, the Halloween troll. Back in October 2016, one of Burger Kings’ NYC restaurants was covered in white sheets with McDonald’s sprayed on to create a ‘ghost of McDonalds’ costume – because, what’s scarier than Maccies?
Naturally, it was finished with the dig ‘Just kidding, we still flame grill our burger’.
“If Burger King can do it so can we!” we hear you scream.
Get in touch and let’s brave your marketing together – firstname.lastname@example.org