Burger King’s McWhopper Wins the Grand Effie at the Effie Awards

Interpublic Group is No. 1 holding company for first time

Burger King’s McWhopper campaign, created by Y&R New Zealand with help from David, ABPR, Code and Theory and Turner Duckworth, picked the Grand Effie on Thursday night at the 2017 North American Effie Awards, honoring marketing effectiveness.

The campaign, which was a huge PR success, began on Aug. 26, 2015, when Burger King placed a full-page open letter in The New York Times calling for a “burger wars ceasefire” with longstanding corporate rival McDonald’s, in celebration of Peace Day.

The offer was declined. But BK, in its Effies entry, called the work “an overwhelming success—shifting all brand measures, selling a truckload of burgers. Oh, and we helped World Peace, too.”

“This year’s Grand Effie winner proved once again that when agencies and clients exhibit shared courage to support a bold, insightful idea, the results can indeed be both creatively outstanding and indisputably effective—even against the greatest odds,” Vineet Mehra, CMO of Ancestry and member of the 2017 Grand Effie Jury and Effie Worldwide’s Board of Directors, said in a statement.

The Grand Effie winner was selected by the Grand Effie Jury just hours before Thursday’s Effie Awards ceremony in New York. Other Grand Effie finalists (the top-scoring Gold Effie winners) included:

• Be the Match and space150 for “Be the Guy”
Seventh Generation and 72andSunny
• SimplyGo Mini and Ogilvy & Mather (with Carat London and FleishmanHillard) for “Breathless Choir”
• Lockheed Martin and McCann New York (with Momentum Worldwide, Universal McCann and Weber Shandwick) for “Field Trip to Mars”
• Donate Life America and The Martin Agency for “World’s Biggest Asshole”
• Office Depot and McCann New York (with Merkle and AGAIN Interactive) for “The Co-Worker Collection”

Other top awards for marketing effectiveness went to:

• North American marketer: Unilever and PepsiCo (tied)
• Brand: IBM
• Holding company: Interpublic Group (a first for IPG)
• Agency network: Ogilvy & Mather
• Agency office: McCann New York
• Independent agency: Droga5