For a while now, Burger King has proclaimed the “superfan” to be young males that frequent fast-food restaurants on a super-regular basis (9-10 times per month). And over the past year, they ramped up their advertising with controversial campaigns like SpongeBob SquareButt and the one I wrote about in detail, the Super Seven Incher.
Burger King said it was all about males, ages 18-34.
Now, they’re thinking a little differently – mainly because their sales have been riding a slippery slope in the downward direction.
According to an article in this week’s AdAge, John Chidsey, BK CEO, re-defined “superfans” for investors:
To clarify, it’s not just 18-to-34-year-old males, it’s all ages and all household demographics, with over half of them having children.
And interestingly, over 29% are 50 years of age or older.”
In other words, their marketing was all screwed up. They spent a great deal of time and an inordinate amount of money alienating their core customers.
Women who not only purchase meals for themselves, but for their spouses, boyfriends, girlfriends, children and – perhaps most important – grandchildren.
Has Burger King learned its lesson? Time will tell. The company is introducing new menu items and promotions to attract female customers back to its franchises. No word yet on upcoming advertising campaigns, but most likely they will be backing away from the “wonderfully edgy” campaign their ad agency talked them into.
It’s another blow for the advertising myth of the 18-34 demographic. Hazzah!