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See the clever way Burger King plans to lure you back to its restaurants (no Whoppers needed)

In Belgium, Burger King’s new ad campaign features items customers left before lockdown.

Burger King made its fresh ingredients a selling point in its recent rebranding. Now, it’s putting items that are decidedly more stale front and center.

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Paris-based design agency Buzzman launched an ad campaign on May 25 for Burger King Belgium without a burger in sight. Rather, the campaign beckons would-be Whopper-eaters back into its restaurants with images of personal items guests might have left behind right before lockdown last year.”You probably can’t wait to see them again,” beckons Burger King in the social media ad campaign. “Well Burger King also can’t wait to see you again.”

[Photo: Burger King]
The ads are made up of a series of photographs that capture the inside of a Burger King, taken from the vantage point of someone outside its glass paned windows. Lonely personal items—a kid’s backpack, a stuffed bunny, a charging phone, a McDonald’s hat—sit on tables and chairs. The Buzzman creative team chose objects that told a richer story, according to Julien Levilain, managing director at Buzzman. So they created the campaign around the idea of “frozen moments,” he says. “Those moments where nothing was happening in our restaurants. Moments that were lost. It felt like lost objects were a great way to convey this idea.”

This isn’t the first clever COVID-19 related campaign from Burger King Belgium. Last year, the fast food chain issued face masks that diners could customize with their orders so they didn’t have to speak the order muffled through a mask. The campaign will expand to other countries, according to Levilain.

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Indoor dining in Belgium reopens on June 9 after first closing last October. Diners can look at long-lost  belongings from underneath a thin layer of dust, along with a menu that provides a return to fast food with an extra serving of sentimentality.

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About the author

Lilly Smith is an associate editor of Co.Design. She was previously the editor of Design Observer, and a contributing writer to AIGA Eye on Design.

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