Short List
Product / ServiceWHOPPER
CategoryA04. Travel, Leisure, Retail, Restaurants & Fast Food Chains
Idea Creation COLENSO BBDO Auckland, NEW ZEALAND


Name Company Position
Nick Worthington Colenso BBDO Creative Chairman
Neville Doyle Colenso BBDO Planning Director
Paul Gunn Colenso BBDO Head of Activation & PR
Tim Freeman Colenso BBDO Production Director
Scott Chapman Colenso BBDO Senior Producer
Steve Cochran Colenso BBDO Executive Creative Director
Brett Colliver Colenso BBDO Senior Art Director
Brent Courtney Colenso BBDO Designer
Ahmad Salim Colenso BBDO Group Business Director
Abbi Barker Colenso BBDO Business Director
Taylor Holland Colenso BBDO Account Manager
Helen Darwin Colenso BBDO Account Manager
Jen Storey Colenso BBDO Head of Broadcast
Nick Harvey Colenso BBDO Experiential Business Director
Kate Boekhorst Colenso BBDO Experiential Senior Account Manager
n/a TripleDouble Production Company
James Woodbridge Burger King NZ General Manager of Marketing
Chet Patel Burger King NZ Marketing Manager
Simon Vicars Colenso BBDO Creative Group Head
Andre Sallowicz Colenso BBDO Creative Group Head

The Campaign

Every summer, millions of flame grills are rolled out in backyards across New Zealand. For Kiwis, the summer and flame grilled food go hand in hand. So we decided to harness the nation’s love of their BBQs to convince them once and for all that Burger King cook their burgers over real flames. Hundreds of New Zealanders were given the opportunity to open a Burger King in their own backyard and cook burgers the way Burger King does. Not with hi-tech, limited edition flames, but the same flames you’d find in the barbeque on your back deck. Suddenly every home with a BBQ had the potential to become the home of the Whopper. Backyard Burger King kits were given away through a campaign that utilized TV, digital, in-store and social with potential candidates directed to apply at, if selected, they were sent a Backyard Burger King kit.

Creative Execution

Via TV, digital, social and in-store messaging, consumers were invited to apply for their very own Backyard Burger King at If selected, they were supplied with an incredible kit – a Burger King restaurant in a box. Complete with ingredients to make 16 Whoppers, customized cooking utensils, hat, apron, matches and even a light up Burger King street sign. Everything they needed to turn their home into the Home of the Whopper. 5 of the activations were filmed with a professional crew to create shareable content and drive further entries. Consumer generated footage and photos were collated on and used to create the summation TVC at the end of the campaign. Throughout the campaign, everything we did was aimed at creating engaging social content – both in the hero pieces we made and also from the UGC that our many Backyard Burger Kings created.


The biggest single shift has come in our core KPI – driving belief in New Zealanders that Burger King flame grill their burgers. From a pre-campaign starting point of only 19% of people believing BK flame grill (December 2015, precampaign) in the first two months since the campaign launched at the start of the year this is up to a whopping 63%! (March 2016, mid-campaign) This shift has translated into real world sales. After a prolonged period of stagnation, BK sales are up 7.5% this quarter – their largest single quarter spike in 22 years. Backyard Burger King applications through our Facebook page numbered over 20,000, and whilst this campaign was never advertised outside of NZ we received entries from over 83 countries, everywhere from New York city to Mongolia!

Backyard Burger King was created to influence a consumer belief – whether Burger King really does cook on flames. We knew that by influencing consumers around this one metric, we could have a huge effect on their behaviour when it came time to choose which Quick Service Restaurant (QSR) they wanted to visit. Throughout the campaign, there was also a strong call to action to apply for your own Backyard Burger King across all communications – leading to over 20,000 applications from consumer all over New Zealand.

We wanted to cast a wide net to maximise potential growth, so our campaign therefore had to appeal to all consumers aged 18-45. Category growth had been stagnant for a prolonged period so growth had to come by stealing visits directly from our main competitors – McDonalds, KFC, Wendy’s, Carl’s Jnr, Subway. The research we conducted had thrown up some surprising stats around the belief of the Burger King key differentiator, flame grilling. We had told New Zealanders we use real flames for 22 years, they simply did not believe us. We needed a new way to bring it to life, to make consumers associate Burger King with flame grilling (and therefore fresher, tastier food) and to therefore re-evaluate the brand. Our call to action was simple – apply for the chance to open a Burger King in your backyard. You supply the flames, we’ll supply the food.


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