Well, that escalated quickly. What began as a friendly proposal between two brand rivals has become a much larger collaboration, as Burger King accepted offers from a handful of fellow food chains to collaborate on a burger to raise awareness for the UN’s International Day of Peace.
Last week, Burger King extended a branded olive branch to McDonald’s by way of social media and full-page ad invitations to join forces to raise awareness for the UN’s International Day of Peace, to combine their signature sandwiches and create the McWhopper.
At the time, it smacked of marketing opportunism–a chance for BK to call-out its larger rival, publicly daring the golden arches to say no. For its part, McDonald’s had the perfect response for a brand that didn’t want to engage in temporary fast food fraternalism. McDonald’s CEO Steve Easterbrook suggested the two companies could do more than a trivial marketing stunt to help the Peace Day cause. After that message and vague proposal for a more “meaningful global effort,” though, the brand has been silent on the subject of International Day of Peace.
Filling that silence was a collection of other brands, among them Denny’s, Wayback Burgers, Southern burger chain Krystal, and Brazilian fast feeder Giraffas, all offering to take McDonald’s place in the Peace Day PR extravaganza. By accepting these other invites with open arms, BK rises above McD’s rejection and still gets its Peace Day project.
McDonald’s, meanwhile, has completely squandered the opportunity by doing absolutely nothing, with or without Burger King. Peace Day is September 21, that’s a lot of social chatter between now and then, and it’s going to take a lot more than all-day breakfast for McD’s to look like anything more than a total Peace Day party pooper.