Why Burger King's 'You Rule' Campaign Works

The newest fast food slogan might just be the most effective.

When I pulled up to the drive-thru lane on my most recent visit to my local Burger King (here's looking at you, Brattleboro, Vermont), I was not expecting to leave with anything more than my Whopper Jr. and some vanilla soft serve. But I drove away with more than that. A paper crown? No, but you better believe I was offered one, despite not having any kids with me. Instead, I left with a smile on my face, just like one of those customers in the commercials. Judge me if you like, but BK's new approach is working on me.

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"Welcome to Burger King, you rule!" I heard through the speaker as soon as I drove up.

"Oh, thanks!" I said in spite of myself. "Um, I'll have a Whopper Jr..."

Yes, I was taken off guard by being told so definitively that I rule. Literally no one in my life is so quick to tell me I rule, at least not on the regular.

I pulled up to the window to pay, and I was greeted by a very happy Burger King employee, who extended the offer of a paper crown. I declined, but it was fun to have been presented the option. I paid and pulled up to the final window, where I was handed my food by yet another happy employee who told me, as I departed, that I rule.

It ruled.

On paper (or on a screen, the way you're experiencing this story), I might have expected to be weirded out by these interactions, or at the very least, to have found them cheesy. But far from coming across as a mandated corporate greeting, the employees' delivery was so chipper and genuine, they really sold the whole thing.

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I knew that Burger King had changed its slogan to "You Rule," but it's not often that fast food taglines punctuate every customer interaction; I wondered if all BK visitors would soon have the experience I did. I asked Burger King if all locations are doing this, or if I'm just lucky. A spokesperson for the company confirmed that "You rule!" is indeed ubiquitous.

"Since launching the 'You Rule' campaign last October, the modernized tagline has put Burger King Guests at the forefront of everything we do," said the spokesperson via email. "'You Rule' is more than just a marketing campaign – it impacts every Guest touchpoint including the in-restaurant experience, where we encourage Team Members to spread the joy that 'You Rule' embodies every chance they get, whether that be greeting Guests in-person or thanking them in the drive-thru. 'You Rule' is all about outwardly appreciating everyday royalty – YOU!"

That reads a little intense, and I'm sure everyone will have their own opinions on this approach. I also am pretty certain that a lot of the experience might be in the delivery—if employees are tasked with rattling off taglines they would prefer not to say, it certainly won't have the intended effect (and might make a challenging job that much tougher). Still, from my perspective, this is a campaign that is working, at least for the moment. It added a little pep to my step, and it really did make me want to come back. Wish I could say the same for the soft serve.

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