Campaign of the Year: Burger King’s ‘Google Home of the Whopper’

With an estimated $135 million in earned media and a top creative award at Cannes Lions, the fast food chain’s device-hijacking stunt asked: What happens when an ad disrupts technology?

Burger King’s ‘Google Home of the Whopper’
CANNES LIONS AWARD:  Grand Prix for Direct

Voice search through smart devices like Google Home is set to seriously disrupt the ad world in the coming years, with a recent Juniper Research report forecasting ad spend on voice-powered digital assistants will reach $19 billion by 2022. This year’s best campaign asks: What happens when an ad disrupts those technologies instead?

Burger King’s “Google Home of the Whopper,” made with the brand’s creative agency David Miami, commanded and held the attention of consumers and marketers alike back in April. The stunt became a catalyst for controversy, conversations around technology’s vulnerability and ultimately a lot of industry praise, snagging the Grand Prix in the Direct category at Cannes Lions and now Marketing Dive’s Campaign of the Year award.

Read more at Marketing Dive:


‘Everyone has to eat’ says Morrisons as it anticipates a price-conscious Christmas

With Christmas fast approaching, the current retail climate suggests consumers will be looking for a bargain.

Morrison's Supermarket

John Lewis has already predicted the mood around big ticket items will be subdued for quite some time – suggesting Brits will be less likely to trade up this Christmas.

The reality, according to GfK, is Brits are slightly upping their spend on bigger buys such as electricals, but only because they are borrowing more money on credit cards. It has labeled this trend “worrying” and says rising interest rates and inflation will also dampen the mood among many consumers this Christmas.

Despite this negative backdrop, big four supermarket Morrisons will be taking a lot of positive momentum into the crucial Christmas trading period. Today (2 November) it revealed like-for-like sales rose 2.5% in its third quarter.

Although this is a slower rate of growth than the 2.6% and 3.4% growth it recorded in the previous two quarters, it represents the supermarket’s eighth consecutive quarter of sales growth – a reality far removed from the struggling brand inherited by Morrisons’ CEO David Potts when he took the job in February 2015.

And asked by Marketing Week during a press call whether Christmas 2017 will most benefit discount brands, Potts answered: “Our job is to serve core customers as well as we can whatever the prevailing circumstances are. Equally, everyone is welcome at Morrisons and with our ‘Best’ premium range doubling its sales over the last year – the quality message is now there at the business.

“This Christmas we will be holding the prices of 100 of the key festive items – from potatoes to mince pies – so customers will need to decide [if they want to spend more somewhere else] as ultimately everyone has to eat.

“There’s every chance Brits will dial down on eating out and come to Morrisons instead so there’s plenty to look forward to. We’re in better shape this year with more stock in store and more research completed. We feel more chipper going into Christmas.”

Morrisons is trying to tread the line between low prices and high quality

Under Potts, Morrisons has repeatedly talked up its brand positioning as a shop keeper and as a food maker, with it looking to find the middle ground between similar prices to the German discounters Aldi and Lidl as well as high food quality perceptions.

Reflecting on the year, Potts says the brand has most benefitted from word of mouth buzz due to the improvements it has made to its core offer.

He concluded: “The Most important thing we have done with our brand is listen hard to customers and colleagues, and wherever possible respond quickly to their concerns.

“That has led to priorities within the business around competitiveness increase and allowed us to serve customers better. There’s now great value on the shelves and great work completed on our own brand around both notching up quality and notching down pricing combined. All of this combined with cleaner stores has made the shopping trip better than it was and our brand stronger in the market.”

from Marketing Week:


Zombies are seemingly everywhere this Halloween — even in burger packaging — but Nestle’s KitKat puts a twist on the usual undead cliches in in a campaign with its long-running “have a break” tagline.

The social media campaign includes two spots in which it’s the zombies who want a break. One seen here, depicts the classic zombie horror chase–except it’s the humans who are chasing the zombie. All he wants to do is hide from them and eat his KitKat in peace. Another spot sees undead hands rising from the grave towards an unsuspecting couple on a park bench, only to grab a KitKat out of the woman’s handbag. Both films finish with the line “Have a Break from the Usual.”

The campaign, created by JWT London and directed by Sunny Bahia via JWT’s in-house content production studio Pace, also includes an interactive version of a YouTube film where fans can choose whether Human or Zombie hands win in a tug-of-war over a KitKat.

from Creativity-Online:

A Disgruntled Granny Accuses Musselman’s of Ripping Off Her Apple Sauce Recipe

Granny’s such a troll these days.

Meet elderly and disgruntled Helen from Westerville, Ohio. Aided by her grandson Bobby, she sets out to internet-shame the makers of Musselman’s Apple Sauce for ripping off her recipe.

Working in Helen’s kitchen, the pair create a series of accusatory videos. Helen’s catchphrase is “Hello, internet!” Bobby’s not so great working the camera. It’s all an ad campaign designed to play up Musselman’s homemade taste.

Establishing the saucy premise, here’s the first of several online clips:

“We explored a variety of ideas using a grandmother as a central character, but nothing quite lived up to a grandma who doubled as an internet troll,” says Maria Bowers, associate creative director at Brunner, which developed the campaign.

The set-up was attractive because “it let someone other than Musselman’s—and even better, someone anti-Musselman’s—push the brand’s message,” she says. “The videos also opened a space for dialogue between Musselman’s and Grandma Helen, allowing the brand to tell more of their story and showcase their humble personality.”

In the ad below, that “dialogue” takes the form of a respectfully worded brand rebuttal, which Helen just isn’t buying:

Brunner picked Doreen Loughlin from among 10 performers for the lead role because she “brought a great quirkiness to a character we had originally painted with a lot more bite,” says Derek Julin, an associate creative director at the agency. “When a campaign relies so heavily on one person to drive positive brand awareness, it’s important the world likes that person. So in the end, we agreed charming Helen was better than bitter Helen.”

Kaden Winters, the actor who plays Bobby, really digs into his supporting part in this next installment:

“We casted for your typical sarcastic tween, and Kaden was great, both in his interpretation of Bobby and with providing us a lot of fun B-roll, making the spots feel even more authentic,” Julin says.

Like apple sauce itself—any apple sauce—the work is appealing but not exactly the kind of stuff that makes you ravenous for more. (A couple of :30s would’ve satisfied our appetite.)

All elements were filmed in just a few hours, with limited time for retakes. “Fortunately, the fact that our grandma is supposed to be a novice at making homemade videos worked to our advantage,” says Julin. “The actors’ natural flubs only contributed to their lovability and believability.”

Loughlin was a tireless trouper whose energy never wavered, and “after a long day of shooting, she rushed off to two more auditions,” Julin says.

Well sure, she was buzzed after hitting all that sauce!

from AdWeek:

Campaign Trail: Super spooky Halloween marketing from Burger King, Fanta and Angry Birds

What is more terrifying — a creepy clown, taking an elevator ride with zombies or an Iron Maiden Angry Bird? Read on to find out as brands put a Halloween spin on tried-and-true marketing tactics by ramping up the scare factor to varying degrees.

Burger King brings out the (very creepy) clowns in Halloween dig at McDonald’s

The rundown: On Halloween night, select Burger King restaurant locations in the U.S. will give a free Whopper to customers who come in dressed as a clown from 7 p.m. to close, the company announced in a news release. The stunt was partially inspired by Google Trends data that show clowns are the third most sought-after Halloween costume idea this year.

However, the promotion — hitting Boston, Miami, Los Angeles, Austin and Salt Lake City — will be limited to the first 500 guests only. To drum up hype for the effort, Burger King released a 90-second spot on YouTube showing a man having some creepy, circus-themed encounters on a night bike ride. The chain is also encouraging fans to share their freaky getups with the hashtag  #ScaryClownNight on social media, tagging the official @BurgerKing account.

“We don’t usually talk about clowns,” Alex Macedo, Burger King’s North American president, said in a statement. “But for this Halloween, come dressed as a clown to eat like a king.”


The results: Who says great marketing needs to be subtle? Burger King’s clearly having a fun time clowning McDonald’s with a push that puts a spooky spin on the rival’s long-time brand mascot Ronald (the photo file shared in the news release even has a ‘Ronald’ tag in its URL).

This isn’t the first Halloween where BK’s turned up the heat on its competition. Last year, it covered a restaurant in Queens, New York, with a massive sheet as the “ghost” of McDonald’s, with a sign that read “Booooooo! Just kidding, we still flame grill our burgers. Happy Halloween.” The 2017 dig is even more on-trend, coming on the heels of the massively popular horror film “It,” which is centered around a familiar looking clown that terrorizes children in small-town Maine.

Plenty of people are sure to be putting on their best white makeup and rubber noses this season, per the Google Trends findings, meaning Burger King might actually drive some serious foot traffic on Oct. 31. It can also spin some timely user-generated content out of the #ScaryClownNight hashtag on social media. It’s not the only brand to take this approach to the holiday: Dunkin’ Donuts is running its own costume contest via Instagram.

—Peter Adams

Fanta’s scary elevator ride takes experiential marketing up a level

The rundown: Mall and amusement park visitors in the U.K. can take a scary four-minute elevator ride courtesy of Coca-Cola brand Fanta that leverages virtual reality, sound, lifelike rumbling and whooshes of air to create a 4-D experience simulating the scary things that happen on the way to a Halloween party after the elevator seemingly breaks down and stops at different floors. Those unable to visit the Westfield mall or Thorpe Park for “Fanta: The 13th Floor” can go online to experience a 360-degree video, which can be found on YouTube and the Fanta website. Online video and paid social are also being used to drive awareness.


from Marketing Dive: