How fear and flames boosted Burger King’s brand

Burger King, the quick-service restaurant chain, has achieved an outsized impact in its category by focusing on true marketing differentiation.

Five years ago, when Fernando Machado left Unilever to take on marketing responsibilities at Burger King, the quick-service restaurant (QSR) chain was anchoring its advertising with a series of celebrity endorsements.

“I hated that campaign with all my being. Every time I watch it, it still makes me want to throw up in my mouth,” he said.

It wasn’t just Steven Tyler’s fault. The series also featured the likes of David Beckham, Mary J. Blige, Jay Leno, and Sofia Vergara.

“It was not a cheap campaign,” Machado told a keynote audience at Advertising Week New York 2018. “But the brand...

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