BK to Embrace Broader Market

Pitching a strategy that involves broadening Burger King’s target audience and reemphasizing its Home of the Whopper leg acy helped McCann-Erickson Worldwide land creative duties on the $400 million U.S. adult ac count last week.

“McCann gave us a deeper consumer understanding that we didn’t have before,” said Rich ard Taylor, BK’s vp of U.S. marketing. “Above all, McCann wanted to win. I like that.”

The Miami-based client’s most frequent users are males ages 18-24.

“The creative idea appeals to a certain part of the personality of everyone in each age group,” said Nina DiSesa, chairman and chief creative officer of McCann in New York. “When women go for this meal [The Whopper, fries, Coke], they’re tapping into their masculine side.”

DiSesa said research showed that consumers of both genders and all age groups who prefer The Whopper when they eat fast food expressed a lot of passion, gusto and enthusiasm for life in general.

McCann’s campaign, set to break in March, will emphasize the Whopper’s “superior” flame-broiled taste.

The most recent spots in the “Got the urge?” campaign, created by incumbent Lowe Lintas & Partners, which was knocked out early in the contest, focused on the chicken sandwich and hamburgers, emphasizing their price. The Whopper campaign focused on consu mers’ inabil ity to resist the sandwich, requiring the use of an arm patch activated by proximity to the burgers.

Lowe Lintas and Grey Worldwide, both New York, and Campbell Mithun in Minneapolis pitched the adult account and are still vying for the estimated $80 million kids’ assignment. McCann had also presented ideas for the kids’ account, enlisting the help of outside shop Posnick & Kolker in New York.

A decision on that piece of the business is expected within two weeks. Shops in the kids’ pitch have worked for clients such as Lego and Sprite (Lowe Lintas), Hostess and Gen eral Mills (Campbell Mithun), and Hasbro and Starburst (Grey).