About the Author

Michael Doig is a science teacher, web developer, and avid traveler who lives in Brooklyn, NY.

Marketing For The Masses Or Your Way Right Away

Burger King always seems to have some cool trick up their sleeve. They had the Subservient Chicken and the “King” Halloween Masks. So when I went there today for lunch I wasn’t surprised when I saw their new gimic.

BK Mask

At first I kind of just absorbed the feeling the signs were projecting, but then I just started smiling once I realized what was going on. It reminded me of something I had read online. A post on the Chartreuse blog. He said “Treat the smart girls like they are pretty and the pretty girls like they are smart.” and that was exactly what was going on.

The sign hanging above the register said something to the effect of “Coffee now in three easy to say sizes”. A slight stab at the Starbucks crowd perhaps? I went to fill my drink and again a big sign saying something like “More napkins, no pickles, extra mayo. No wrongs, just rights”. I got my food and sat down, and then I noticed a little note on my drink.

It read “This cup makes a statement about you. It says “Hey, look at me, I’m an ambitious yet responsible person.” You could have gone larger, but you didn’t. You could have gone smaller, but again you deferred. No, you know exactly what you want in life, nothing more, nothing less. It’s good when you have things your way.”

Bk Cup

At this point I had to say wait a minute. I’m looking around a room of tired looking, overweight, worker bees on lunch break and their giant fast food drink cup is saying they are “an ambitious yet responsible person.”? What the hell is going on here.

It’s just another example of reverse marketing at it’s finest. Apple did this same kind of thing with the iPod Shuffle. They took the weaknesses and turning them into strengths. The Shuffle was nothing but a memory stick with some buttons, but they marketed the fact that you could listen to your music randomly. Life is random, remember? They even named it the Shuffle.

This must be Burger King’s answer to the Super Size Me backlash. Instead of saying you really don’t need 2 liters of Coke for lunch, they give you a little message about how you know exactly what you want out of life. The big sign over the soda machine says no wrongs, just rights. Another way of subtly telling us, hey if you want to eat a Triple Whopper we won’t stop you. Maybe I should just shut up and eat my freshly microwaved flame-grilled sandwich.