Dunkin' trolls McDonald's over Donut Sticks launch
- Dunkin' fired back at McDonald's recent LTO of donut sticks and posted a glimpse at its new packaging, which bares a strong resemblance to the Golden Arches' classic boxing, Business Insider reports.
- The new McDonald's breakfast item is very similar to Dunkin's Donut Fries, which the coffee chain launched in June.
- Dunkin's LTO was considered one of its best performing bakery items in recent history, according to CEO David Hoffman.
Trolling is quickly becoming a key marketing strategy for fast food chains. This is especially true for Burger King, which trolled McDonald's last year with its Whopper Detour that offered customers one-cent whoppers for ordering online if they were close to a McDonald's. Burger King seemingly took aim at KFC by airing a campaign for its latest grilled-chicken sandwich. The ad features the Whopper maker's King wearing clothes very similar to Colonel Sanders, dubbed K.F.G. (King of Flame Grilling). During last year's Super Bowl, Wendy's attempted to go after McDonald's.
While these combative moves might seem brutal, they have paid off. Burger King's efforts against McDonald's was so successful that it led to 1.5 million downloads of the BK App. And Wendy’s Super Bowl LII ad itself may've been a bomb, but the visibility alone gained them 3.3% more foot traffic — 84% more than other QSRs.
Brand competition has certainly been combing social media, but television is still a go-to spot for fast food. Chipotle's latest campaign featured a documentary-style ad of its morning prep for both TV and Facebook, as a way to connect with younger audiences. McDonald's and Burger King are certainly no strangers to television ads — BK being a regular at riffing on current events and pop culture. Aside from McDonald's taking marketing cues from Dunkin', the QSR giant’s Twitter feed hasn't trolled competitors as of late.
And amid this ongoing battle of the fast food brands, competition appears to help QSRs perform well. Dunkin' has been battling for breakfast dominance and could have an opening as McDonald's has struggled to regain its once-busy early morning breakfast traffic, even though its all-day breakfast addition helped boost revenue by 35% in 2016. Breakfast still makes up close to a quarter of its sales, and it's likely that McDonald's latest pastries will aid in its attempts to conquer the fast food industry.
While brands continue to strategically steal from one another, they will probably keep doing so until the market becomes overly saturated or if/when one actually dominates the QSR playing field.