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Burger King Takes Jab At Ronald McDonald With New Free Whopper Promotion

Burger King Takes Jab At Ronald McDonald With New Free Whopper Promotion

Somewhere between last year’s clown hauntings and this year’s theatrical release of Stephen King’s “It,” Burger King saw an opportunity.

An opportunity to torment its clown-touting foe.

The Restaurant Brands International Inc (NYSE: QSR) chain is leveraging the globe’s growing clown aversion in anti-McDonald’s Corporation (NYSE: MCD) marketing campaigns.

In the latest effort to reinforce the ominous image of its rival mascot, Burger King summons the mischievous among us for “Creepy Clown Night.” The first 500 patrons dressed for the affair will receive a free Whopper between 7 p.m. and 3 a.m. Oct. 31 at select stores in Miami, Boston, Los Angeles, Austin and Salt Lake City.

To drive home the spirit of the night, the gathering’s ad features a swarm of darkened clowns, led by a sinister Ronald McDonald double, descending on a Burger King with the mocking tagline, “Come as a clown, eat like a king.”

The promotion augments Burger King’s earlier efforts to play the negative symbolism. In Germany, the brand transformed one “It” premiere into a feature-length advertisement by projecting the franchise logo with “The moral is: never trust a clown” on the pre-credits black screen. The marketing prank birthed the enduring hashtag #nevertrustaclown.

Before that, the Russian line called to the fearful association by complaining the Pennywise-Ronald resemblance rendered the film a two-hour advertisement for the competitor.

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