- Wendy's has faced social media backlash for dropping spicy chicken nuggets from its menu, and Burger King is taking advantage of the situation by launching its own limited-run take on the item. The rival chain is promoting its new nugget offering by giving away a free 10-piece order to customers named Wendy on Oct. 13, according to a news release. Those not named Wendy can pay $1.49 for a 10-piece box.
- The offer is valid from 12 p.m. to close that day, and customers have to show a valid, government-issued ID proving their first name is Wendy. The promotion will be limited to restaurants in Miami, Los Angeles and New York City.
- "We know there is an appetite for Spicy Chicken Nuggets, our competitors have launched similar products in the past, and fans will be excited for this delicious product at Burger King restaurants,” Alex Macedo, president of Burger King's North American operations, said in a statement.
Fast food chains have long enjoyed taking digs at each other but marketing stunts in recent years have developed an especially competitive edge, with Burger King and Wendy's serving as standout examples. Around this time last year, Burger King decked out a restaurant in Queens, New York, as the ghost of McDonald's with a sign that read "Booooooo! Just kidding, we still flame grill our burgers. Happy Halloween."
In the case of the spicy chicken nuggets, Burger King clearly had a good read on the pulse of social media and quickly spun outrage at a rival into a promotional opportunity. Burger King already had a $1.50 chicken nugget option on its menu, so it was probably relatively easy to add a spicy version for a limited time in order to potentially steer upset Wendy's fans to its stores. The added tweak of giving the nuggets away to customers named Wendy adds an extra-clever kick to the effort.
That's not to say Wendy's is a slouch: The chain's gained a notorious reputation for its social media snarkiness, particularly on Twitter. Last week, it engaged in a Twitter "rap battle" with Wingstop, another poultry-centric business. The result was a multi-tweet back-and-forth that even drew in actual hip-hop star Rick Ross, who is an investor in Wingstop franchises.