It took getting laid off as a result of the economic downturn for one-time loyal Burger King patron Noah Rubin to realize that hey, maybe scarfing down bacon cheeseburgers every day isn’t the best habit to keep physically and financially fit. The Wall Street Journal wonders how BK’s strategy of catering to 18-34 “super-fans” like Rubin (who now dines out less and has changed his diet to more organic foods) and virtually ignoring other demos like women and children in its advertising efforts will reflect when the brand announces its earnings report this week.
From the looks of it, BK’s approach doesn’t seem to be working as of late as the company has seen two straight quarters of same-store sales declines including a 4.6% drop in the three months ended Sept. 30 thanks in part to super-fan defection. According to the WSJ piece, the “irreverent” messaging in recent years–Talking to young men like “the cool uncle who tells you how it is” according to BK’s SVP of global product marketing and innovation John Schaufelberger)–may have also alienated franchisees who pleaded with BK execs to woo more mothers and children by toning down the ads and hyping kids’ and breakfast offerings. Considering that BK already planned to beef up its ad budget this year (cue Crispin smiling), looks like the franchisees might be SOL.