McDonald’s Left Prospects Hanging on Fb. What Burger King Did Subsequent Was a Good Instance of Emotional Intelligence
Imagine the scene: you sit for hours in a McDonald’s drive-through. Frustrated beyond words, you go to McDonald’s Facebook page to leave a complaint … only to get no response.
Then out of the blue you will finally get an answer …
From Burger King. Who offers you a free Whopper?
How would you feel about it?
This is just a great example of Burger King Denmark’s recent advertising campaign, which was developed in collaboration with Danish advertising company Uncle Gray.
The social media campaign was aimed at McDonald’s customers who complained on the brand’s Facebook page, reports Adweek:
“Titled ‘The Whopper Reply’, Burger King’s customer service reps reached out to McDonald’s fans by responding to their messages with a fun reply and a link to redeem a free Whopper.
“On September 24th, Burger King flipped through more than 1,000 comments made by McDonalds fans in Denmark, covering days, weeks, months, and in some cases years.”
“Customer service should be fit for a king,” said Burger King’s ad. “And while we are not perfect, we do our best to help everyone. Even our old friends.” (You can see the full ad at the end of this video.)
“We waited two hours in McDrive!” exclaimed a commentator.
“Well anyone can have a slow day on fast food,” replied Burger King. “Here’s a quick whopper.”
“We only have one bun in our Big Mac!” another customer complained.
“Big Mac Convertible? How innovative,” replied Burger King. “Here’s a whopper with two buns.”
“Why do you call it the Big Mac when it isn’t?” asked another disappointed McDonald’s patron.
“In their defense … nobody wants a ‘little Mac’,” replied Burger King. “Here’s a normal whopper.”
Daniel Schröder, Marketing Director at Burger King Sweden and Denmark, told Adweek that his company was not good enough to take care of its own guests online. “When we looked at it, we realized that there are even more burger fans who deserve an answer,” said Schröder. “We went out of our way to help in the hope that a Whopper love with a flame grill can help make things better again.”
The campaign appears to have been a success. “Wow,” replied one customer after Burger King held out a hand. “I’m surprised. What a service.”
“What a gesture,” replied another. One person simply commented, “Thank you – respect.”
Burger King’s advertising campaign is more than clever. This is an example of how brands can use emotional intelligence to build meaningful customer relationships.
Why Burger King’s reaction is emotionally intelligent
Emotional intelligence is the ability to identify, understand, and manage emotions. This includes developing the quality of empathy, which serves as the basis for all good relationships.
When analyzing its own online customer service, Burger King found that it fell short. Of course, it could have just focused on how to improve and move on.
Instead, the company realized that if it missed a golden opportunity, its biggest competitor could be. Burger King reached out directly to McDonald’s customers who already had bad taste in their mouths and took the opportunity to knock those customers off their feet.
Then Burger King went one step further.
The voucher for the free Whopper is delivered directly to the customer via mobile phone. Customers must enter their phone number to receive their free gift. This gives Burger King the potential to continue to attract these customers with special offers in the future.
In the end, Burger King receives the customer and their phone number – and in return, offers a good atmosphere.
So remember, the next time you see room for improvement, take a look at your competitors. Are they missing in the same areas? In this case, improving your own service can open the door to solving your competitors’ customer problems at the same time.
This means that emotions work for you and not against you.
The opinions expressed by Inc.com columnists here are their own, not those of Inc.com.