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1¢ Whopper: Burger King Creatively Detours McDonald’s Consumers

December 12, 2018 Rachel Schulties

Between clown-themed Halloween campaigns and now 1¢ Whoppers, Burger King (BK) has become a ruthless marketer, stopping at nothing to steal consumers from competitors, especially McDonald’s. As of December 4, the popular American burger chain is encouraging consumers to download their app with the draw of a limited-time 1¢ Whopper.

What Do Consumers Have to Do for a 1¢ Whopper?

Consumers looking for a steal will need to be inside or in close proximity to a McDonald’s location when they order a Whopper via the Burger King app. The app will then direct consumers to the closest Burger King, where they can pick up their 1¢ Whoppers.

How Does the 1¢ Whopper Deal Really Work?

1¢ Whopper BK burger king marketing mcdonalds burger

Known as the “Whopper Detour,” this marketing campaign took a bit of development on the tech side of the operation.

In order to detect consumers’ locations in correspondence to a McDonald’s restaurant, Burger King’s team implemented 600-foot radius geofences around almost all McDonald’s locations in the U.S. Burger King has 7,200 locations compared to 14,000 McDonald’s restaurants, which puts 75% of the American population within three miles of a Big Mac.

How Does the 1¢ Whopper Help Burger King?

The larger idea behind a 1¢ Whopper is to entice consumers into long-term usage of the Burger King app, which launched in August. As mobile spend surpasses digital, Burger King is looking to grow its mobile audience for ordering and payment purposes and aims to appeal to those who haven’t yet used the app.

What Other Marketing Initiatives Is Burger King Taking?

mcdonald's marketing whopper burger king waze BK

Leveraging technology further, Burger King has partnered with Waze to promote the 1¢ Whopper. When drivers using Waze stop near a McDonald’s location, a Burger King promotion appears on-screen, tempting consumers with nearly-free burgers.

Burger King also released a print ad, which includes the BK King altering a blurred-out McDonald’s sign to “Billions Swerved.”

With bold campaigns, Burger King has become a new marketing champion (of sorts) as the brand relentlessly fights its competitor for consumers.

Curious about marketing within the fast-food community? Read Fried Chicken Wars: The Top 5 Chains Go Head to Head for more.

Reimagining your marketing win?

Contact Digital Media Solutions today.

About the Author

Rachel Schulties

Rachel Schulties is the Executive Vice President of Agency Services at Digital Media Solutions (DMS), the fastest growing independent agency focused on performance marketing. As the leader of the agency team, Rachel oversees client relationships, agency services, the award-winning Sparkroom performance technology and technical support function that helps clients boost performance and redefine the win. Since its inception, DMS has evolved into a full-service performance marketing company that services firms within highly complex and competitive industries including mortgage, education, insurance, consumer brands, automotive, jobs and careers. DMS has achieved incredible year-over-year growth, which has earned recognition on the Inc. 5000 list in 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017.

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