Boca Burger Bites Back

Hoping to ride the coattails of a multimillion media blitz by meatless patty rival Gardenburger, Boca Burger this week breaks its first ad campaign with print work from McConnaughy Stein Schmidt Brown here.
“We kind of jokingly say around here that [Gardenburger’s] our best friend,” said Katie Torres, vice president of marketing at Chicago-based Boca Burger. “They drove a lot of people to the category.”
Gardenburger, owned by Wholesome & Hearty Foods in Portland, Ore., has spent more than $10 million this year on print and TV ads from Publicis & Hal Riney in Chicago, including an appearance during the Seinfeld finale on NBC.
Boca Burger’s more modest effort suggests people try the product because it tastes good, not soley because it’s healthier than ground beef. “Not only do Boca Burgers have the great taste of a charbroiled burger,” copy reads, “they’re also low in fat and calories.”
“We’ve drilled to our point of difference, which is taste,” Torres said. “There’s not a lot of doubt that they’re good for you.”
Two print ads from MSSB illustrate the tagline, “You won’t believe it’s meatless,” by humorously depicting nonhuman carnivores fooled by the juicy patties. One features a Venus flytrap plant; the other, five piranhas in a fish bowl.
Spending will exceed $1 million on an annualized basis, Torres said, but declined to give specifics. “It’s still very much in the early adaption stage,” she said.