Burger King's Latest Ad Is Inspired By The Poop Emoji

Burger King Brazil wants all to know that there is nothing poopy about their food by airing an ad in which they feature a "Poop Emoji Ice Cream." "Our goal was to show in a funny way that our product –- no matter how it looks –- is the cleanest of all," Juliana Cury, the marketing director of Burger King Brazil, explained to The Drum. What all this is referring to is the commitment Burger King made in September to remove 120 artificial ingredients from their entire menu (These included artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives).

It's a similar rhetorical move to the moldy Whopper ad they ran in 2020. The purpose of that was to highlight Burger King's decision to remove artificial ingredients from its Whopper. So, without preservatives, the burger molds, leaving the company to comment "the beauty of no artificial preservatives." It plays on a gross image to reinforce the message. 

Hopefully, people will not develop an association between Burger King's ice cream and poop. But that's the risk the marketing team chose to make with one of their latest campaigns.

Not everyone was impressed with Burger King's poop-themed ad

The danger of going this route is that it plays upon people's disgust. So, when Adweek shared the clip on Instagram, the inevitable comment came: "They're saying it's free from all the preservatives and yet they're touting it as [poop]? I'm confused." Others understood the trick all too well, saying, "They always try *way too hard* to be witty, which makes it very non-witty IMO." But, in fairness, that's most advertising. 

Probably the most negative response to all this was the feeling that Burger King's Poop Emoji Ice Cream was too imitative. "Nathan Fielder did it better," one wrote. "Is 'Nathan For You' behind this idea?" another asked to which a third agreed, saying "He absolutely has to be."

"Nathan for You" was a TV series created by the Canadian comic Nathan Fielder in 2013. In it, as The New Yorker explains, his character helps business owners by trying to implement rather silly sounding ideas. In one case, he had a frozen yogurt shop sell a "poop" flavor, figuring that the insane-sounding flavor would attract curious customers. So, really, Burger King's ad doesn't even imitate the original well as it is too busy winking at the camera. And, of course, the winking poop emoji is it's own thing.