In what could only be described as a text book case of how not to launch a brand, Burger King is in strife in Belgium over an advertising campaign asking Belgians to vote online to “crown” the global fast-food giant the true ruler of the country – and not the nation’s revered monarchy.
The campaign was all part of a stunt to get locals aware that the US burger giant was setting up shop in the country this month.
The animated advert, noting that the real King Philippe was crowned in 2013, announces the brand’s launch and asks: “Two Kings. One crown. Who will rule? Vote now … ” Voters are then directed to an online spoof poll.
However, the actual monarchy are reportedly furious at the stunt and representatives for Belgium’s King Philippe have issued a “please explain”.
“We told them that we were not happy with them using an image of the king in their campaign,” palace spokesman Pierre-Emmanuel De Bauw told news wire service Reuters, adding that the King’s image could not be used for financial gain.
A spokeswoman for the burger behemoth said the company is considering changing the ad. “We are deliberating on how to proceed. Should we make a change to our campaign we would communicate that,” she said.