Burger King makes move to score with black community

Burger King has long considered the black community among its core base of consumers.

Company: Burger King
Campaign: The Next Best Move
Agency mix: UniWorld, Legacy Marketing Partners
Lead agency: UniWorld
In-house team: Alexandra Galindez, director of multicultural marketing; Michelle Miguelez, manager of external comms

Burger King has long considered the black community among its core base of consumers. With its "Next Best Move" initiative, the restaurant is looking to strengthen its standing among this group by conducting a national tour to community basketball courts in 41 markets.

"This is the first time we've had a program of this magnitude to reach out to the African-American community," says Alexandra Galindez, director of multicultural marketing for Burger King. "We know African Americans really give preference to brands present within their community. They are also very digitally connected."

Based on this, the restaurant paired community involvement with digital outreach. The team hired reality star Syrus Yarbrough, of The Real World fame, as a paid spokesman to be the tour's public face. Along with visiting basketball courts, he and the crew will upload videos of players and other on-the-road happenings to thenextbestmove.com.

"We set out to position this around basketball culture," says Galindez. "We want people to know you don't have to be male or a player to participate."

Prior to rolling into a market, the team alerts the local media to draw people to the basketball court where the Burger King crew will be, as well as to its stores to meet Yarbrough and win prizes, explains Michelle Miguelez, the company's manager of external communications.

Visitors to the campaign's Web site can upload their own basketball moves or recognize people who they believe have given back to the community. Here, they can also vote on their favorite basketball move.

The winner, who will be announced at the end of June, will collect $10,000 and have the chance to be profiled in a basketball lifestyle magazine, such as Dime or Bounce, or Web site.

The site will also feature quirky snapshots from the road, with segments that highlight things such as "the next best hairdo" in a particular region, Galindez says. In addition, there's a Facebook widget that people can post on their wall to drive others to the site.

Print advertisements debuted in the February issues of Dime and Bounce, and will continue for six issues. The ad push also included radio spots, as well as banner and search engine buys.

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