How Burger King Became the Leader in the Fast Food Industry

For over five decades, there has been a rivalry between two of the biggest burger companies in the world. But recently, only one of these fast-food restaurant chains has shown outstanding performance that has earned them the top spot in the fast-food industry. They have also paid close attention to requests of their customers using the client feedback survey system to get all the information they need to make improvements.

Since it began in Florida in1954, Burger King has been persistent and intentional about its growth. With fewer private franchises owned across 100 different countries, Burger King seems to have made more impact than its nemesis, McDonald’s. Burger King has put in much effort to be the top dog of the food industry, and you’re just about to find out how.

While McDonald’s is the larger company, as they have more franchises than Burger King, the company seems to be declining in sales and revenue. McDonald’s has been experiencing customer loss – Burger King has been taunting them relentlessly.

Here are a couple of strategies Burger King adopted that earned them this title.

1.     Unique Advertising Campaigns

If there’s one thing Burger King puts in a lot of energy to create asides from the famous Whopper Sandwich, it’d be their advertising campaigns. Burger King took up the initiative of marking Mental Health Awareness Month every year in the United States. The leading fast-food chain partnered with Mental Health America, introducing new meals that described various moods.

Even with this initiative, they didn’t fail to seize the opportunity of pulling their biggest competitor down. How? Well, Burger King excluded “Happiness” from the mental awareness mood meals, which made a mockery of McDonald’s “Happy Meals” food options.

In 2019, another campaign that antagonized its rival began – ‘Burn that Ad’. The fast-food chain launched an app that encouraged the South American market to burn its rival ads. This app replaced every McDonald’s ad with a Burger King ad, making its users eligible to get a free Whopper from the closest restaurant to them.

Most of their ads are either direct or indirect attacks at McDonald’s and its other competitors.

2.     Simpler, Cheaper Meal Options

Burger King also knocked its top competitors down by offering cheaper meals and rebranding old options to make customer’s orders easy. While other fast-food chains kept on increasing meal options on the menu, Burger King retained its list and only recycled ingredients already in use. Lesser options reduce drive-thru traffic, as customers don’t feel overwhelmed when placing an order. This way, customers visit Burger King just so they can get their meals quickly and end up loving the taste.

Burger King also made an intentional attempt to push McDonald’s out of business by introducing a bigger and cheaper variant of the McDonald’s menu. The fast-food burger chain gave customers a run for their money when they introduced the Big King sandwich, which aimed at reducing the demand for McDonald’s Big Mac.

3.     Franchising

Burger King has over 18,000 outlets in the world, with 99.7% of its locations franchised or privately owned. The leading fast-food restaurant gets its primary source of revenue from franchising, receiving royalties from the total revenue of each location. The expansion of its operation lies in the power of franchising.

The success of Burger King also results from the solid leadership of each unit, making improvements to the décor, customer service, advertisements, and general operation. These units also give customers the quality and quantity they crave at their convenience.

4.     Licensing

To attract older customers, Burger King has a license to sell alcohol in the UK and one of its units in downtown Manhattan. This way, customers will not hesitate to grab a bite whenever they purchase alcohol. Licensing also opened more business doors for Burger King as they get to partner with top alcohol companies. Burger King is targeting the whole consumer market, and not restricting the possibilities of continuously expanding.

5.     Empathizing with Competitor’s Customers

Burger King had its staff responding to every negative review left on McDonald’s Facebook page. Most replies promised customers with a negative experience at McDonald’s a better time at their restaurant, sometimes offering them a free meal.

Final Verdict

The Burger King fast-food chain is unapologetically feisty when it comes to winning customers. The leading fast-food chain thrived off marketing strategies that discriminated against its competitors. While other fast-food chains focused on selling taste and value, Burger King focused on putting up strategies that trivialized the efforts of its competitors, which, in turn, got them more loyal customers. 

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