Dynamic Marketing Communiqué

A Whopper within a Whopper?! Here’s how this campaign got a WHOPPING 60,000+ sales in Brazil in 2022! [Thursdays: Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing]

February 16, 2023

Miles Everson’s Business Builder Daily speaks to the heart of what great marketers, business leaders, and other professionals need to succeed in advertising, communications, managing their investments, career strategy, and more. 

A Note from Miles Everson:

Welcome to today’s edition of “Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing!” 

For those of you who aren’t familiar with guerrilla marketing yet, this is an unconventional, engaging, and impactful marketing strategy. 

Campaigns of this type serve as reminders that promoting or advertising a brand doesn’t always have to be too complex, formal, or traditional. 

Today, we’d like to share with you an example of an AWESOME guerrilla marketing stunt. 

Read on to know how this global fast food brand captured video game players and streamers’ attention with a buggy yet thrilling campaign. 

Miles Everson
CEO, MBO Partners
Chairman of the Advisory Board, The I Institute

Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing 

Many gamers are familiar with bugs and glitches, which refer to when a game isn’t working properly due to: 

  • Graphic errors
  • Software complexity
  • Programming errors
  • Development tool issues 

… and others. 

In fact, lots of gamers HATE bugs and glitches! 

Imagine this: Would you be pleased at all if you’re “in the game zone” then suddenly, a bug causes you to lose momentum? 

You’d probably feel frustrated… or even mad. 

But, what happens if you treat glitches differently and turn them into something GOOD? 

That’s what Burger King and DAVID São Paulo did in their May 2022 guerrilla marketing campaign in Brazil. 

The name of the campaign? 

The “Burger Glitch,” also known as “#BugKing!” 

Photo from WPP

In this digital campaign, Burger King tasked Brazilian consumers with searching the brand’s mobile app and social media channels for bugs and glitches. 

The twist? 

For every bug or glitch found, participants received amazing deals and promos worth up to 40% off! Moreover, those who posted about the glitches they found on Burger King’s mobile app and social media channels received additional perks. 

The campaign was one of the fast food chain’s latest attempts to bolster its online presence. This was in line with the growing trend of mobile ordering apps becoming an important part of QSRs’ (quick service restaurants) post-pandemic strategy. 

Photo from Ads of the World

“Burger Glitch” coupons and discount codes gamified the rewards experience. This encouraged users to make an immediate purchase and increased the likelihood of future app use. 

What’s more? 

Burger King’s social media channels were altered with “Burger Glitch” communications, interactions, and buggy elements. Self-service kiosks and out-of-home (OOH) displays in all Burger King stores across Brazil were also “glitched.” 

Photo from André Mezzomo

This next one’s even more amazing! 

To tie the real world to the online world, Burger King produced “glitched” versions of its famous Whopper sandwich. Those who ordered the “glitched” menu item were amazed that their Whoppers had extra patties, nuggets, or fries inside the burger. 

Some even received a Whopper within a Whopper! 

Photo from Ads of the World

Was Burger King’s “Burger Glitch” campaign effective? 

The fast food brand’s creation of its own in-app glitches struck a chord with gamers, who would sometimes go out of their way to eliminate these bugs in their entire gaming experience. 

By capitalizing on these app errors and turning them into something good, Burger King was able to turn gamers and streamers’ “worst nightmare” into an enjoyable activity filled with rewards. 

What were the results of the campaign? 

  • Throughout the campaign, Burger King garnered over 60,000 Whopper sales using “glitched” coupons. 
  • Burger King’s mobile app became the most downloaded app in Brazil during the campaign. 
  • The number of young adults who downloaded and used the Burger King mobile app in Brazil grew by 11% in May 2022. 
  • The “Burger Glitch” campaign won a Gold Lion at the Cannes Lions Awards in 2022. 

Clearly, these results show the “Burger Glitch” campaign was a hit and effectively got Brazilian consumers to interact with the brand both online and offline. 

Congratulations, Burger King and DAVID São Paulo! 


Mobile apps have become an increasingly integral part of the QSR landscape, especially as the industry faces shifting consumer habits. These apps help streamline menus, which then enable kitchen staff to prepare food in a more organized manner. 

… and by using these tools to leverage an online “imperfection” (bugs and glitches), Burger King not only effectively executed the campaign but also captured its target market’s attention with the audacious idea of selling Whoppers that mimicked a digital glitch. 

As Rogério Chaves, DAVID São Paulo’s Creative Director, said: 

“We wanted to approach gamers the ‘Burger King’ way: Celebrating the imperfections of the world, laughing at mistakes, embracing the uproar. That’s something within the essence of our communications.” 

We hope you enjoyed reading today’s guerrilla marketing feature! 

Get inspired with Burger King’s “Burger Glitch” campaign and start planning your own captivating and audacious marketing strategies. 

Who knows? With a clever tactic, you can also turn your target market’s “worst nightmare” into one of their “best memories” with your brand! 

(This article is from The Business Builder Daily, a newsletter by The I Institute in collaboration with MBO Partners.)

About The Dynamic Marketing Communiqué’s
“Thursdays: Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing”

Jay Conrad Levinson (1984) said that Guerrilla Marketing “works because it’s simple to appreciate, easy to execute, and inexpensive.”

Guerrilla Marketing is unconventional.

Looking beyond the traditional ways of advertising, marketers, and advertisers need to spice things up in order for their brand to have campaigns that not only make an impact but also stick to their target market’s mind.

Guerrilla Marketing usually aims to have direct contact with consumers.

This type of direct contact should spark an emotional reaction that leads to consumers effectively remembering the brand.

It’s about making a big impression and making that impression last a long time (if not forever).

Guerrilla Marketing can be inexpensive.

The effect of this is being able to create a buzz around the brand, and the strategy used to market it. Almost everything is passed around through word-of-mouth.

Word-of-mouth is one of the greatest outcomes and it usually doesn’t cost anything.

This is every business’ or brand’s dream!

Every Thursday, we publish tips, examples, and other useful content on unconventional ways of marketing and promotion.

Learn more about how to grab your target market’s attention and make an amazing first and lasting impression without having to spend a lot of money.

Businesses don’t really need to spend much for a guerrilla campaign. You do not need a big budget to be successful. You just need creativity and a good imagination.

Hope you’ve found this week’s guerrilla marketing insight interesting and helpful.

Stay tuned for next Thursday’s Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing!


Kyle Yu 
Head of Marketing 
Valens Dynamic Marketing Capabilities 
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