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Behind Burger King’s Charitable Alliance with McDonald’s


Pablo Dominguez Agregan and Aleksander Madej from 180heartbeats + JUNG v MATT speak to LBB’s Nisna Mahtani about censoring the ‘forbidden mix’ of brands

Behind Burger King’s Charitable Alliance with McDonald’s

Burger King Poland did something drastic to grab the attention of their customers and support a charitable venture at the same time. They partnered with their largest competitor – McDonald’s. The campaign sent shockwaves through Poland, encouraging other food establishments to put competition aside to support the fast-food giant’s efforts. 

In an undoubtedly funny and surprising campaign by 180heartbeats + JUNG v MATT, the ad and supporting imagery censored the infamous red fry box in an effort to share the message that buying them would lead to a donation to the Ronald McDonald Foundation. For every serving sold, Burger King Poland donated 1pln to the Ronald McDonald Houses Foundation, as well as offering a free Whopper Junior to anyone who participated. The campaign showed Burger King’s unique brand tone by combining humour with positive, impactful change. 

It’s not the first time the brands have put aside their differences for a common cause - last year Burger King encouraged people to eat at McDonald’s or any eatery to support fast food workers during the pandemic. But this time it’s all about raising money for charity.

To explain how the campaign wanted to spread that ‘warm feeling’, creative director, Pablo Dominguez Agregan and junior copywriter, Aleksander Madej from 180heartbeats + JUNG v MATT, talk to LBB’s Nisna Mahtani.


LBB> Burger King supporting McDonald’s. What was the initial brief for the campaign?

Pablo> Well, I used to work for McDonald’s as a creative and was responsible for the creation of the McHappy Day campaign for two consecutive years, which made it a very dear cause to me. This was my first year working with Burger King, and I wanted to help again, even from the other side. So I pitched the starter to the team, and we started thinking of ideas right away.


LBB> You’ve censored the products that aren’t Burger King’s, in a comedic gesture that simultaneously promotes Burger King and their competitor. How did this idea come about and why is it so effective?

Alek> Everyone recognizes the red fries box of McDonald's, they are so iconic, and we wanted to play around with the idea that censoring = a forbidden mix. It is quite a funny and effective visual technique that catches the viewer's attention, which was our goal. If more people can get to know about the [Ronald McDonald] Foundation and at the same time help and enjoy such a mix of two brands, everyone wins.

LBB> What was the feeling you wanted to create with this campaign?

Alek> During this time, right before Christmas, we wanted to evoke this wholesome feeling. Something that warms your heart and makes you want to participate and share the campaign with others.
Pablo> Exactly. This was a tough year, like the one before. We wanted to add a little positivity to the world.

LBB> How involved were Burger King in the process and did they have any ideas that they wanted to include?

Pablo> The client was on board with the idea from the very first second. At first, we wanted to do it in just a few selected restaurants, and it was the client who decided to go nationwide, which in our opinion was a great move for the activation.


LBB> Why was it important to create such a bold, striking campaign and how did you achieve it?

Alek> It is incredibly important to create bold campaigns that are making a real-world impact. It shouldn’t just look brilliant, it should move people to do positive actions. In this case, it was achieved by putting creative people, a lot of freedom, and a brand’s courage together in one pot. It works wonders.


LBB> How long did it take to create the ad and the supporting imagery?

Pablo> Truth is we managed to shoot the video and all the supporting content in just five hours, during one morning at a Burger King restaurant in Warsaw. Of course, there were many hours of conceptualising before and post-production after, but in general, the process was very agile. 


LBB> What has the reaction been like so far and have there been any memorable responses?

Alek> The reaction was astonishingly positive. Our local ad went international, which is something that everyone wished for. We are honoured to evoke such positive feelings, and we thank everyone that took part and helped us help others. Really, everyone that took part, thank you!
Pablo> One of my favourite responses was that of one famous kebab chain in Poland, which jumped organically into the activation, asking their social media followers to also buy fries from McDonald’s for that one day.

LBB> We can safely say that this promotes alliances that benefit a bigger cause. Why was this an important message to convey, especially in the current circumstances?

Alek> Nowadays, we are bombarded with negative news. We decided to take a break from teasing McDonald's and support their Ronald McDonald Foundation. People want to see some positivity and have this already mentioned, real impact on our world. It's a warm feeling when you can see and spread positivity.


LBB> Would you like to share anything else about the campaign?

Pablo> I just want to thank once again all the people involved in the process: the account team, the creatives, design and social media. And the client, for their bravery and trust.

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180heartbeats + JUNG v. MATT, Fri, 17 Dec 2021 16:00:00 GMT