Q] Give us an insight into your latest campaign #MemePremierLeague?
Burger King is known for finding innovative and creative ways to engage with its audience. Our brand communication is built on modern and contemporary issues. IPL is always a great opportunity to engage with our consumers. This time, we wanted to try something new and exciting, which is very native to our TG. Meme is the language that our TG uses to communicate today. When they react to their friends on WhatsApp, they respond with memes, and it has become an engaging way of conversation. So, we decided to use that as a platform during the cricket season. We picked up interesting moments from the matches, and encouraged our consumers to create memes around them. We have received fantastic responses from our audience.
Q] Burger King came into India seven years ago. But, at the moment its presence is only in a few states. Which are the new regions you are planning to penetrate in the near future?
We have a target of opening 700 new stores in the next three years. We are on track to do that, and we even had an IPO a year-and-a-half ago. As far as our category in India is concerned, it is under-penetrated. In India, there is huge headroom for growth. So, we’ll get closer to our consumer, allowing easier access, and providing greater dining experience, takeaway, and delivery. As far as regions are concerned, we will keep looking at all opportunities across the country. We recently opened a store in Guwahati. That’s our first store in the North East, and it has given us fantastic response. Apart from penetrating new markets, we’ll also keep opening more stores in existing markets, depending on demands and consumer preferences.
Q] In India, people are still very attached to home-cooked meals. What has been your marketing strategy to attract such a population, specifically the middle-aged and elderly people?
In India, home-cooked foods reign, and there is no challenging that. Our category is more about out-of-home food consumption. For example, when the customers look for a break, when they step out to shop or watch a film, etc. There is also a new demand now – convenience. For example, people who are travelling or working from home, they need that convenience. They look for something that offers great quality, taste and value for money, and that is where Burger King steps in.
India is a young country and young people today want to experiment. They eat out, and experiment with food. So, we try to offer as per the requirements of consumers. For the older generations too, lifestyles are changing. We, as a brand, look for insights on consumers and try to understand what they prioritize when they go out to a restaurant. For example, during Holi last year, we ran a campaign around the theme – Trust in Taste. Customers now look for authenticity, and they prefer brands that are transparent. Today, our foods are free from all synthetic colours, and artificial flavours. We did that a year ago (before any other brand did) and thus, are much ahead of the curve.
ABOUT THE BRAND
Restaurant Brands Asia Limited is the master franchisee for Burger King in India. The first Burger King restaurant was opened in India in 2014, and now it operates more than 300+ restaurants across the country. The brand recently launched BK Café, and has an exclusive BK APP with great offers, exclusive deals and loyalty rewards for its guests.
Creative/ Social Media agency: Foxymoron Digital marketing Private Limited
Media agency: GroupM Media Private Limited
PR Agency: Adfactors PR
Kapil Grover is the Chief Marketing Officer of Burger King India, and leads all marketing initiatives for the brand. Being a seasoned marketer with 22 years of rich experience, Kapil has a proven track record of building brands and driving relevant consumer innovations. As the head of marketing, he is entrusted with leading and formulating Burger King India’s marketing strategy.
Q] Of late in India, more people are taking to veganism. Are there any plans to introduce vegan options in your menu?
As a brand we will always stay responsive to consumer needs. Veganism is an emerging trend and we are looking at this, as well as several other trends. If this really emerges as a consumer need, we will respond to it.
Unlike other multi-national brands that enter a new market with their global ideas, Burger King India’s menu was completely redesigned for the Indian consumers on day one. So, we have multiple vegetarian patties, a paneer burger, a cheeseburger, among others. We have a veg Whopper, which doesn’t exist anywhere in the world.
Q] Can you please give an overview about your marketing mix?
Over the years, Television and Digital have grown dramatically for us. But our strategy remains on mass marketing because we’re still building awareness. As far as the patterns of media consumption are concerned, consumers have moved to social media, YouTube, and OTT. So, we will continue to focus on that. Our share of Digital spends has doubled over the last year.