chew on this
Posted by Dale Buss on May 30, 2012 11:32 AM
The King is dead. Scratch that: he's back. Long live the King! Regardless of whether Burger King re-gains a long-term lead over Wendy's as the No. 2 U.S. burger chain — both of them trail McDonald's by a mile — the short-term renaissance of the brand has made things interesting in a QSR business that has lacked excitement lately.
Burger King correctly called that involving celebrities in its marketing would create buzz, visibility and interest. So in new ads running over the last few weeks, BK fans and non-fans alike have been intrigued to see familiar faces including Mary J. Blige and David Beckham, Sofia Vergara and Salma Hayek, even Aerosmith's Steven Tyler, shilling for the King.
The fast food chain says it will discontinue the celebrity-studded campaign promoting its new menu this summer. But in the meantime, it has helped create enough interest that Burger King's same-store sales have posted solid gains, while Wendy's have dropped off again, on a relative basis. Burger King once again, at least for a while, has usurped the "Avis" position that it gave up to Wendy's last year.
That's not all Burger King is doing. It's getting into a nice rhythm of introducting new products, a la McDonald's strategy, including smoothies and chicken wraps that are meant to attract a female cohort in additon to the young males that have been the brand's base for years.
To support all of this Burger King has been heavily couponing. And so it has gotten a lot of new customers checking out its foods and, of course, its brand. And for now, the chain is making the most of the attention, while Wendy's stumbles with its W burger launch and unmemorable advertising.
It's up to the King to stay on the No. 2 throne this time.