Burger King Lets Students Unlock Free Whoppers by Showing Their Smarts

Correct answers for the brand's math, science and literature questions are also promo codes

A Whopper burger
Fancy yourself a mathematician? You could win a free Whopper. Burger King
Headshot of T.L. Stanley

Dust off those thinking caps, students, and solve some algebraic equations or fill in the blanks of Shakespearean soliloquies–because there’s a free Whopper in it for you if you do.

Burger King, which recently tweaked its nickname to be the “Stay Home of the Whopper” to encourage fans to order delivery during the COVID-19 pandemic, has kicked off a new campaign aimed at students who are out of class during the quarantine lockdown.

For a week beginning Monday, the fast food giant will post various questions and problems on its social media channels, grilling people on subjects ranging from biology and chemistry to math and literature.

Those who answer the questions correctly can unlock a promo code for a free sandwich, which must be ordered through the Burger King app for takeout or delivery and be coupled with another purchase (just try to resist the temptation to search Google for the answer–which is the same as virtually cheating off of your neighbor’s paper).

The campaign, from Buzzman, is aimed at consumers aged 13-18, though there doesn’t seem to be anything barring older fans from joining in. The promotion launches with a hero spot addressing teens and young adults who, it says, “must know many things.” It goes on to ask: “But do you know things that can get you a $0 Whopper?”

Nine out of 10 students worldwide aren’t on campuses right now because of the coronavirus crisis, according to Unesco data, with many having to switch to online learning instead of an IRL semester.

Meanwhile, parents and caregivers have been turned into home school teachers overnight (with mixed results).

“It’s a playful, light-hearted approach to a real life problem, something we could all use a little bit of right now,” said Marcelo Pascoa, Burger King’s head of brand and communications for North America.

The brand, he added, has been adjusting its communications “with the goal of being relevant in the context of our guests’ lives.”

A free burger as an incentive for learning? Don’t mind if we do.


Agency: Buzzman  
President and Executive Creative Director: Georges Mohammed-Chérif
Vice – President: Thomas Granger
Managing Director: Julien Levilain
Head of Strategic Planning: Clement Scherrer
Creative Director: Julien Doucet
Creative Director: Lilian Moine
Art Director and Copywriter: Hadrien Brice
Business Director: Loïc Coelho
Account Executive: Guillaume Lhoste
Head of Social Media: Julien Scaglione
Social Media Consultant: Félix Brunot
CLIENT: Burger King
Global CMO: Fernando Machado
President, BK Americas: Chris Finazzo
Head of Marketing, BK NA: Renato Rossi
Head of Brand & Communications, BK NA: Marcelo Pascoa
Head of Global Marketing: Diego Suarez
Lead, Advertising & Merchandising, BK NA: Rogelio Magaña
Lead, Media & Digital Marketing, BK NA: Jorge Oliveira
Sr. Manager, Global Brand Marketing: Rachel Kellerman
Manager, Advertising, BK NA: Rachel Williams
Manager, Social Media, BK NA: Flavia Guetter
Manager, Mobile App, BK NA: Preston Nix
Sr. Analyst Media, BK NA: Rebecca Richardson

@TLStanleyLA terry.stanley@adweek.com T.L. Stanley is a senior editor at Adweek, where she specializes in consumer trends, cannabis marketing, meat alternatives, pop culture, challenger brands and creativity.