There are a lot of things to get used to during a pandemic. One of them is trying to make yourself heard while wearing a face mask, which can often feel like a soundproof barrier. Taking it off to talk obviously renders the safety precaution useless, so quieter talkers have had to get used to increasing their volume—especially when doing things like ordering takeout in person.
But what if your mask did the talking for you? With its latest marketing stunt, Burger King Belgium did just that. In partnership with agency Buzzman, it’s launched a line of face masks that have your order printed across the front so all you have to do is walk toward the counter, and the cashier has all the information they need to feed your craving.
To get one of these masks, all fans have to do is comment with their Burger King order on special Facebook posts, or create an Instagram Story with their order typed over a blank mask, starting early September. The creative team is producing 500 masks, all customized.
Belgium has recently seen an uptick in cases of Covid-19, leading to a new government order requiring face masks in all indoor spaces, said Buzzman creative director Tristan Daltroff. In response, Burger King wanted to do something to encourage people to take precautions without straying from the playful nature of the brand’s usual messaging.
“We believe that a serious message can be told in a light and funny way,” said Daltroff. “That’s why we came up with this idea of Safe Order Masks.”
Daltroff noted the increased risk of transmission through talking, so if your face mask can do that for you, it’s an even safer way of ordering.
The stunt will be promoted largely on social, though Daltroff noted that once people are walking around wearing the masks, “it serves as a kind of OOH.”
Burger King certainly is not the first brand to use face masks as a marketing tool. Over the last several months, marketers have launched everything from simple, branded masks to mask-making contests and novelty masks that have a straw hole that allows wearers to sip a seltzer without taking them off.
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