Shopper Innovation Awards: Wendy’s makes magic

The QSR enlists actual magicians to promote its Pretzel Bacon Cheeseburger, resulting in a Bronze win.

Bronze: Brand New!

Wendy’s Pretzel Bacon Cheeseburger uses a bun that’s not really a bun, but a pretzel. It’s what a magician might do to a regular burger: turn it into something else. So when the QSR introduced the limited edition product to Canadians last July, it decided to promote the pretzel bun with a magic show.

Working with agency MacLaren McCann, Wendy’s auditioned 10 different magicians and asked them to incorporate the burger into their routines. The stunt was filmed, with each of the 22 magic tricks shot in one take, and uploaded to Facebook and YouTube over several weeks as part of the “Wendy’s Pretzel Bacon Cheeseburger Magic Show.”

The brand asked consumers to guess how the tricks were done, rewarding those with the most interesting answers with gift cards, and gave away two Las Vegas trips for two people to see magic shows in a separate contest. The agency also created six Vine videos and incorporated the magic tricks into Facebook ads.

More than 4,000 people entered the contest for the trip (1,000 people above target) during the six-week campaign, the brand’s Facebook page garnered 60,000 new “likes,” the videos received more than 320,000 views and 8.7 million impressions were tracked.


Brand: Wendy’s Canada
Agency: MacLaren McCann
Creative directors: Sean Davison,  Mike Halminen
Group creative directors: Dave Stubbs, Duncan Porter
Art director: Duncan Porter
Copywriter: Dave Stubbs
Agency producer: Grace Lee, Nikki Drakul
Production house: Shin Sugino
Photographer/ DP: Edward Pond
Account team: Sandra Avey, Auggie Senis
Planner: Robert Hicks
Web Developers / programmer: Joel Ray, Mark Aritas