In a high-tech attempt to build brand loyalty, Burger King has announced a scheme in the US that rewards loyal customers of the Whopper with points that can be spent on the eBay website.
The decision to visit a fast food restaurant is a notoriously impulsive one, making brand loyalty hard to foster. At the same time, fast food companies are facing the twin perils of increasing competition and slowing sales. The traditional response has been the price promotions, toys and other gimmicks that have become so familiar over the years.
Now Burger King is marking a new departure into a more sophisticated world of brand building by using the Internet.
Customers will be able to use their accumulated points to bid for items such as compact discs and tickets. Burger King has also made an arrangement with AOL Time Warner to allow customers access to some of the company’s numerous Internet sites, in return for in-store promotion of films and entertainment.
One problem with the idea, however, may be that a large proportion of US fast food customers are from minorities, who may not have access to the Internet.