Got Buzz?

By Paul Sekerka

Doing cool things on the web is an integral component to getting your brand recognized. As marketers, it is up to us to get the most out of our clients’ advertising dollar – we’ve got to generate those clicks, increase brand awareness, or generate those leads. Whatever the metrics for success are in the respective campaign you are running, you have to push the envelope a bit. It is, however, equally important for clients to be accepting of having their envelope pushed. Put the brand out there and take a chance, you might be pleasantly surprised with the buzz created.

Burger King® is not only home of the Whopper®, but also home of some pretty clever ad campaigns. For better or worse, one thing is certain, they put themselves way out there – from the “Subservient Chicken,” which allowed users to have chicken the way they wanted it… literally, to their “Whopper Freakout,” campaign that informed BK patrons that their beloved Whopper was no longer on the menu, to their latest marketing endeavor “Angry Whopper,” where users sent “angry-grams” to friends that sacrificed their friendship on FaceBook for a Whopper. All of their campaigns (see links to others below) fall in line with a simple strategy; Burger King will generate buzz.

Another buzzworthy occurrence on the web was the recent pairing of FaceBook and CNN for the live coverage of the inauguration of our nation’s 44th President. Co-branded efforts have their own inherent risks (Will it be perceived by the brand faithful on both sides as a positive or negative? Will it be unbalanced, or do both sides have something of equal value to contribute? etc.), but this union yielded record numbers. FaceBook averaged 3,000 comments per minute, and delivered 5.3 million streams for the day.

Whether you go it alone like Burger King, or partner up like CNN and FaceBook, the point is that you can’t do anything buzzworthy unless you’re willing to step outside of the comfort zone and take a risk. You may catch some flak for one thing or another, but you can’t please everyone, all of the time. Opinions are what they are, and everyone has them.

Relevant Links:
Subservient Chicken
Sacrifice A Friend
Angry Whopper
Whopper Virgins
BK Body Spray
Whopper Freakout
Western Cowboy
FaceBook and CNN: The Power of the Social Web Revealed


2 Responses to “Got Buzz?”

  1. 1 Dane February 13, 2009 at 7:54 pm

    The Burger King brand is becoming synonyms with viral marketing. They definitely set the bar with Subservient Chicken.

    Another great one is

  2. 2 Paul S. February 16, 2009 at 9:13 pm

    I almost forgot that one. Another favorite of mine was the ‘Why So Serious’ viral campaign for Dark Knight two years back.

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