Burger King asking its customers to ‘Order from McDonald’s’. Will this move bring a king-size win for Burger king?

Burger King recently is winning the hearts of people by urging its customers to order from McDonald’s and other fast-food chains in the UK to lessen the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on them.

Okay! So, do you think that the year 2020 cannot surprise you anymore? Well! I guess you are wrong. It’s just the moment you think 2020 has got nothing left to surprise you, Burger King is now urging its customers to go and order from McDonald’s. Yes! Burger King is out here trying to get you to order from its fast-food rivals such as McDonald’s, KFC, Pizza Hut, Subways, and Greggs.

In the latest appeal to customers, American fast-food chain Burger King is winning over the hearts of many across the globe. How? Allow me to explain. Burger King recently took to its social media appealed to its customers to “order from McDonald’s”. This was supposedly not an impulsive decision by BK as they also provided customers the reason behind the move.

The announcement by Burger King came ahead of UK’s second lockdown when restaurants in England prepare to come under new restrictions caused by the increase in coronavirus cases. Burger King has urged its customers to get their fast-food fix elsewhere during the month-long lockdown, starting on Thursday (November 5). BK appealed to its customers or I better say fans to order from its fast-food rivals as a way of boosting franchises suffering from the economic downturn following COVID-19. 

Following the news of a second lockdown coming into action across England, Burger King UK shared a statement through its social media handles. The opening statement of the message was: “Order from McDonald’s”

Catchy! Obviously. But in the latter part of the message Burger King urged customers to order from its competitors to support the “thousands of staff” working in different food chains. The American Burger giant also said, “Getting a Whopper is always best, but ordering a Big Mac is also not a bad thing”.

“We never thought we’d be asking you to do this,” Burger King tweeted. “Just like we never thought we’d be encouraging you to order from KFC, Subway, Domino’s Pizza, Pizza Hut, Five Guys, Greggs, Taco Bell, Papa John’s, Leon…or any of the other independent food outlets, too numerous to mention here. In short, the Burger giant asked its customers to order from its any other sister food chains.

This unusual step by Burger King is winning the hearts of people around social media and left everyone talking about it. The company’s UK arm has asked its customers to not only support its competitive food chains but also wants its consumers to support other local food outlets as well, especially the outlets who suffered the most during the coronavirus pandemic.

Since the time the tweet has been shared, it has received more than ten thousand replies with many assuming the food chain as classy while others believed it to be a great move to support other food chains as well as small businesses and local independent restaurants. However, in a world full of opinions, some believe that this extraordinary step by Burger King is a great and superb marketing strategy to connect emotionally with its customers.

‘A Day without Whopper’: To support competitor’s cause

Burger King in past has many times showcased the commendable and healthy competition it has with its biggest competitor McDonald’s. If you are a burger fan, there is obviously no need for me to explain the hardcore competition between the two big burger chains.

Last year in September, Burger King left everybody astonished with its hearty and spirited gesture towards McDonald’s. The US-based fast-food chain decided to not sell its most popular and in-demand food item – Whopper for an entire day to divert burger craving customers to McDonald’s instead to support the competitor chain to raise more money for children fighting cancer.

The gesture of Burger King to help McDonald’s to donate to cancer buzzed the internet with tweets, likes, shares, and comments all across the world. This really was a king-sized win for Burger King as the move helped the company to create a brand image that people can resonate with. Such a practice of competitors joining hands with each other in order to support each other’s cause really helps to create a brand value that reaps in the future.

Interesting and way-out Burger King ads

Burger King is always known for its interesting advertisements and marketing strategies. A few months ago, in February, with the arrival of Valentine’s Day, Burger King launched an interesting and amazingly build campaign titled ‘Lonely no more’. The company took a direct dig at the competition and created an innovative ad where it asked its customers to click a picture with the famous McDonald’s clown Ronald McDonald to get a free whopper on Valentine’s Day.

The ad was presented in a very open way as everybody is well aware of Ronald McDonald because I am very much sure we all have a childhood picture sitting next to Mr. Ronald. Such campaigns are often termed as polarised as such initiatives have high chances of offending a true McD fan. Internationally, such ads are quite common but when we specifically talk about India, the presence of such ads where the company’s take a direct shot at the competitor is still very uncommon, but obviously not unknown.

There are many instances where it becomes quite clear and visible that Burger King considers McDonald’s as its true competition. Burger King’s ‘Whopper Detour’ campaign, was one of the campaigns which left everybody amazed. The fact that Burger King was actually sending its customers to McDonald’s store so that the customers could receive a coupon for one Cent Whopper burger. Confusing? Allow me to explain.

Through this campaign, Burger King encouraged people to use their mobile app. For app promotion, BK used geofencing technology around McDonald’s stores. Burger King’s Whopper Detour promotion used to unlock when users came within 600 feet of a McDonald’s store. Firstly, to avail the offer, people need to download the Burger King app and drive to a McDonald’s outlet after which they would automatically receive a coupon for one Cent Whopper burger. And then the app itself will guide the user to the nearest Burger King outlet.

This campaign was considered to be a bit dangerous as Burger King with this move could have lost its permanent customers, but according to the reports, the campaign generated around 1.5 million app impressions for Burger King. Amazing, isn’t it?

In 2017 also, King released a campaign around Halloween with the hashtag ‘scary clown night’. Looking at the popularity of clown costumes in 2017, the campaign asked people to dress as a clown to avail of a free burger, pointing directly at McDonald’s Ronald McDonald.

These are just a few examples of how the competition between Burger King and McDonald’s is thriving since many years now via its ads and campaigns. But let’s not forget the fact that no matter how the two burger giants continue with their rivalry, they have always stood up for each other for a good cause and have always supported each other to maintain their competitiveness in the market.

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