The King Loses Royal Status in Burger King

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While McDonald’s is clinging to their Ronald McDonald character, a topic that has been on the news due to an outcry from childhood obesity activists, rival Burger King is rumored to be developing a new logo design that downsizes the actual King. This is just one of many changes that are purportedly planned for the fast food giant.

The Miami Herald broke the news this week and Whopper lovers around the country are already getting nervous. This is not just a slight change in brand, but a complete overhaul for the restaurant (if you want to call it that). The chain is going to change their logo, their marketing, their menu, and even the appearance of their stores.

The menu will offer not just old favorites—including the Whopper—but healthier choices as well. Some of the ideas emerging are mango and berry smoothies and Asian chicken salad with fresh edamame and low-cal vinaigrette. The stores will be modified to feel more modern and streamlined, with red and black as the main colors. The King will be cut out of advertising, and even the word ‘King’ perhaps made smaller in the logo design.

These modifications to the fast food brand come after a change in ownership. Although Burger King has a well-recognized brand and logo design, it is very similar to many other fast food restaurants, such as McDonald’s. One way for the company to ensure future success is to differentiate itself from the competition. Presenting itself as a more sophisticated, more adult choice via streamlined visuals and the loss of the cartoon-y king will definitely accomplish this, especially when you consider that McDonald’s is determined to hold onto their clown.

One change in store is a modification of the target marketing audience. Burger King, like most fast food, has a target audience of predominantly men. However, the new brand will reach out to females as well. Because most men consider the preferences of the women in their lives when choosing where to eat as a couple, this may be the winning blow in the battle between Ronald and the King.

Burger King is putting their money where their mouth is, so to speak. The new owners are replacing some of their management and moving their advertising budget to $320 million annual advertising budget to another firm.

In addition to adding new, female and diet friendly selections to their menu, Burger King will also be placing a greater emphasis on food quality. Jonathan Muhtar, BK’s VP of global innovation states, “As we develop new products, we’re focusing on best in class and quality.” Considering the notoriously low quality of most fast foods, this goal should be well within the company’s reach.

Differentiating your business from your competitors is one of your greatest branding tasks. This new Burger King brand should be interesting because there are only so many ways you can present fast food and most of them are already being used!