Burger King’s mental health promotion gets mixed reception
By Staff on Friday, May 3, 2019
Hey would you like a side of depression with your Whopper? This ad should do it.
Burger King has rolled out a campaign ahead of Mental Health Awareness Month promoting a burger meals focused on “real” moods.
The “Real Meals” include the Blue Meal, Yaaas Meal and DGAF (Don’t Give a F—) Meal. They include a Whopper, french fries and a drink.
The campaign riffs off McDonald’s, Happy Meals – but if the comments on YouTube and Twitter is anything to go by, the stunt has had a very mixed reception.
congratulations to burger king for ending mental illness the same way kendall jenner and pepsi ended racism
— sloane (@cottoncandaddy) May 2, 2019
Burger King is not the first brand to use mental health to sell stuff and won’t be the last.
Customers, who are becoming increasingly cynical about social purpose driven marketing, have called out the food giant for the implausible, tenuous link between the cause, the brand and the spin-off product.
Here’s a handful of the Twitter reactions;
i was gonna kill myself but then i saw that i could get a burger king meal with a sad face on it
— amy brown (@arb) May 2, 2019
is there a cringe meal
— Mackenzie Harding (@potatobanjo) May 2, 2019
I feel I’m done eating at Burger King.
— Mark Dice (@MarkDice) May 2, 2019
you’re a hamburger restaurant
— Rob DenBleyker (@RobDenBleyker) May 2, 2019
Do you provide health plans for all of your employees that allow them to see mental health professionals and afford psychiatric medications?
— Kyle 🌱 (@KylePlantEmoji) May 2, 2019
Just punched a hole in my wall thinking about all the money I could have saved last year by just having Burger King instead of having to go to the psychiatric hospital
— Your Grace (@GraceSpelman) May 2, 2019
— Ira Madison III (@ira) May 2, 2019
Others were angry about other things…
You say you care about depression, but you discontinued Chicken Fries for years and brought them back without the spicy kind. I see right the fuck through you.
— Chris Ray Gun (@ChrisRGun) May 2, 2019
BK weren’t the only brand to get into hot water today. M&S got called out for rainbow-washing.
M&S has launched a LGBT sandwich for Pride, taking a BLT, adding guacamole to get LGBT.
Oh my God when the Gammons see this. pic.twitter.com/IpasfhT0dW
— Ross McCafferty (@RossMcCaff) May 2, 2019
LGBT people: “it’d be nice if people could stop abusing us when we hold hands in public, we could teach LGBT lessons in schools and if the BBC could stop debating our existence on live air that’d be grea-
Capitalism: “what we’re really sensing here is you want your own sandwich” pic.twitter.com/uIixEel2pq
— Louis Staples (@LouisStaples) May 3, 2019
Calling all LGBTs! Get yourselves down @marksandspencer and help yourself to a free gay sandwich! No need to pay babe, just walk in and take this trash off the shelves. Not sure whether this offer applies to allies too. pic.twitter.com/CgD9bdRqHP
— Aaron Wright (@aaronzimbra) May 1, 2019
M&S is donating £10,000 to the Albert Kennedy Trust (akt), the national LGBTQ+ Youth Homelessness charity organisation.
As Mark Ritson once eloquently put it “Do customers want purpose-filled brands? Sometimes. In some categories. Depending on how it is done. A lot of the time they don’t give a fuck.”