Home » Lifestyle » Coronavirus forces truce in breakfast, chicken sandwich wars
Coronavirus forces truce in breakfast, chicken sandwich wars
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Since the coronavirus pandemic has gotten worse in the United States, it looks as though fast- food Twitter has reached a truce in its lighthearted battle for superiority. There has been a noticeable shift in fast-food companies' marketing strategies in light of the pandemic. If you've looked at any of their feeds recently, you've seen they have moved away from feuding to taking care of more pressing matters: customer complaints.
It's crazy to believe that just a month ago, fast-food chains were humorously roasting each other on social media. For instance, Wendy's announced in a tweet on March 2 that it would start selling breakfast.
The same day as the announcement, competitor Burger King engaged in the commonplace practice of taking shots at its rival, starting a "breakfast war."
But the gloves came off between the competitors long before the official announcement when Wendy's tweeted a picture of the Burger King mascot anxiously awaiting a Wendy's breakfast.
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A feud between the two competitors isn't new. Back in February, Wendy's went after Burger King when it announced it was testing a sandwich containing nothing but french fries.
"When literally anything would be better on a bun than their beef," Wendy's tweeted.
Wendy's didn't stop there, however, adding in a reply that Burger King's whole restaurant is a joke.
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Burger King and Wendy's aren't the only ones that trade jabs at each other. Fast-food chains Chick-fil-A and Popeye's made headlines last summer when they unleashed the famous chicken sandwich war that consumed Twitter users and forced fans of the food chains to draw lines in the sand over which chicken sandwich was superior.
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But despite the day-to-day problems every restaurant is going through, the coronavirus has brought new challenges to the industry. According to the National Restaurant Association, the restaurant industry has lost more than 3 million jobs and $25 billion in sales since March 1 due to the coronavirus, and roughly 50 percent of restaurant operators anticipate having to lay off more people in April.
For the week ending March 22, Wendy's same-restaurant sales were down 20 percent despite the breakfast launch driving sales up 15 percent in its first week and 2.8 percent quarter-to-date.
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While some find the bickering on Twitter between the brands amusing, Burger King and Popeye's parent Restaurant Brand International's Global Chief Marketing Officer Fernando Machado said it's a better marketing strategy to tone down the infighting and have brands "help people with concrete action" during the crisis.
"It’s not the time to be getting into feuds with other brands," Machado said. "Right now, it’s important that we work together to help support our fans and our communities through this difficult time.”