McDonald’s rejects teaming up with Burger King for Peace Day stunt

McDonald’s has rejected an offer by Burger King to team up for a one-day “peace offering” to mark International Peace Day on 21 September.

Burger King released a proposal earlier today (26 August) suggesting that the two restaurants set aside their differences to create the “McWhopper”, which would include a combination of ingredients from Burger King’s Whopper and McDonald’s Big Mac, in honour of Peace Day, a United Nations-recognised annual day of global unity.

The brand suggested that a pop-up restaurant be launched in Atlanta for one day, in between both brands’ HQs in Miami and Chicago, where staff from both fast food chains would come together and serve their limited edition burger.

While McDonald’s recognised its rival’s “great idea”, the brand believes that both chains could do something bigger to make a difference.

McDonald’s CEO Steve Easterbrook released a Facebook post stating: “We commit to raise awareness worldwide, perhaps you’ll join us in a meaningful global effort?

“And every day, let’s acknowledge that between us there is simply a friendly business competition and certainly not the unequaled circumstances of the real pain and suffering of war.”

After saying that the brand will get in touch, the note ends with: “P.S. A simple phone call will do next time.”

In need of a boost

Some might say that the stunt could have been a welcome development for McDonald’s, as the fast food company is in desperate need of a ratings boost.

According to YouGov BrandIndex figures, the chain is at the bottom of the fast food sector compared to its seven competitors.

When it comes to overall Index rankings, a measure of numerous metrics including quality, value and impression, McDonald’s sits at the bottom of the fast food category.

Burger King’s overall Index score puts it in fifth place, but the brand ranks the second lowest when it comes to reputation. McDonald’s, once again, sits at the bottom of the list and also scores lowest on overall quality and recommendation.

These findings are also reflected in the brand’s overall sales figures. It was reported in late July that McDonald’s global sales had fallen by 0.7% in the second quarter, lower than expected.

Burger King, on the other hand, has reported that global sales rose by 6.7% in the quarter.

Its parent firm Restaurant Brands said new burgers, store improvements and special offers helped to drive the sales increase.

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Comments
  • M Carter 27 Aug 2015 at 9:21 am

    I think McDonald’s were right to swerve this stunt, it could have been seen as trivialising Peace Day and all the nations currently in conflict. To make a marketing stunt out of this would have been worse for their PR in the long run.

    • Jamie Smith 27 Aug 2015 at 10:28 am

      To be fair they had the backing of the guy whose idea Peace Day was. He was all for the awareness it has created. Ideally you’d want people to come to it naturally, but it doesn’t create the buzz that this sort of stunt does.

      I think they’re right to suggest something bigger than a one-day event – but I doubt anything will come to fruition.

  • Matt Stockbridge 27 Aug 2015 at 10:48 am

    Maybe ultimately McDonalds have made the right decision. I guess we’ll never know as they’ve taken the position to not even take the idea any further. Unilever used a male fragrance brand to raise awareness for World Peace Day and no one seemed to complain about that. Given the, in many cases, undeserved poor PR reputation that McDonalds has, it’s difficult to see how this could make it worse? Saying no and also adding the rather patronising comments about giving them a call next time is hardly going to improve their image.

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