Burger King’s History, Its Operating Environment, and Branding Issues

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Consistency and flexibility in marketing approaches and strategies are necessary for an industry to create a brand and value. Generally, companies should understand that they should only be involved in selling values to their customers. As such, it is only through selling value that these companies can get their aspired profits and remain to be relevant in the market. This consistency and flexibility in marketing is an essential aspect for companies to continually engage in research and gather the information that will help them in understanding their markets much better and responding to consumer queries fastly. 

For example, companies should seek to understand the changing consumer needs and preferences, develop products that will align with these needs, and promote these products based on what is likely to attract customers most. It would be of no benefit for companies to continue marketing products that are highly unhealthy to a target consumer group that is highly concerned about their health.

One thing that has happened in the past, and as will be discussed in this case, is that some companies have previously been the kings in their respective industries but ended up failing or their strategies flopping due to inadequate or controversial marketing and promotion strategies. With a comprehensive understanding of the market, companies can develop consumer-oriented products and develop the appropriate marketing and branding strategies for sustained profits and customer loyalty.

As the case notes, this company came into the Quick Service Restaurant industry in 1954 in Florida. It sought to bring new ideas by coming up with a new broiler. Its primary competitors in this industry are McDonald’s, Taco Bell, Wendy’s, and KFC. As the burger king products reach the market, the company’s commercials were so consistent in the 1960s. These commercials or adverts were moved from focusing on the burger’s size to the freshness status of the ingredients used to come up with the burger, and finally to a more-consumer-oriented marketing approaches that were launched in 1974, emphasizing more on customization as well as individuality. 

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The company’s marketing efforts and strategies went through different phases, and different categories of consumers were wondering whether the company was using the right marketing approaches in its ads. The most surprising and ironical thing is that even as the economy in the quick-service restaurant industry was booming after the 2009-10 recession, Burger King’s success came into a halt, and the brand and marketing strategies had to be rejuvenated for it “to gain its coolness status”.

Different waves were taking form in this quick-service restaurant industry. Among the many things that were taking place as Burger King was operating were the changing consumer preferences. These customers wanted food that was tasty and affordable at the same time, and one that they could access with ease. There were, however, changes to consumer tastes and preferences, and these changes were emphasizing more on the quality of the food and as well as the memorable experience that they could get from the restaurants. 

At that time, various start-up companies, including Chipotle, were gaining traction, and their brands were intensifying, thanks to their astonishing brand image, appealing designs as well as high-quality products. The introduction of these young companies made the Burger King a well-known company, just like any other player in the market. These many competitors to compete in the market they had brought up products free from health concerns, and the customers were then demanding products that could promote their overall health. 

For Burger King, it is a considerable disadvantage, mainly due to the high amount of calories that are found in its burger products, something that the consumers were shunning. This Burger King was not able to respond in a timely and effective manner, and the much it could do was to introduce some fruit smoothies and salads and eliminate a slice in its burger. It is the 2009 crisis that almost pushed Burger King out from the market, as the company was not able to adjust its brand strategy accordingly. 3G Capital, however, stepped in to reinvent Burger King’s brand in 2010.

As discussed above, Burger King’s history is typified by different forms of blunders in its marketing and branding efforts. First of all, the company was struck by the changing consumer needs and preferences, as customers were demanding products that could align with their health needs. Burger King was, however, not able to change with time, and its products were not offering much-needed health benefits.

Besides, the company’s branding strategy was accused of using controversial approaches when running its ads. Its adverts were full of stereotypes, and its marketing contents have been referred to as having been “downright shocking.” Also, its response to the changing consumer needs negatively affected its brand, and this explains 3G Capital’s focus on revamping Burger King’s brand. Enhancing brand image is always necessary as it determines the perceptions and attitudes which the customers have towards an individual company and its products.

One of the significant ways through the Burger King could restore its lost glory is through positioning. Market positioning is a strategy that helps marketers to place or position their brands within the competitive environment, and make it stand uniquely and in line with the market trends. 3G Capital would have helped in positioning the Burger King by coming up with and promoting products that could promote health. It helps companies to occupy a special place in the customers’ minds, and this is essential for the customers to give preference to a company’s products and not those of the competitors.

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