Subservient Chicken, the star of a hugely successful Burger King marketing campaign from 2004, is set to make a comeback this Wednesday morning. Burger King created the Subservient Chicken website ten years ago to promote the release of a chicken sandwich and the site had 100 million hits within two weeks. The Subservient Chicken is an interactive take on the “Have It Your Way” slogan and appears to consist of a costumed actor performing tasks on demand while on webcam, though all the tasks were filmed in advance. Burger King will attempt to recapture the Chicken’s former popularity to promote the Chicken Big King, a double decker chicken sandwich.
Burger King has been building anticipation for the re-launch of the Subservient Chicken website with half-page newspaper ads in major cities. The ads are in a “missing persons” style, setting the theme for this round of the campaign. Instead of a Subservient Chicken at the beck and call of consumers, it appears he is going to be a bit harder to find. The website will debut a video at 9:00 AM on Wednesday “highlighting the chicken’s rise, fall and reinvention,” said Eric Hirschhorn, chief marketing officer at Burger King. The site currently consists of an empty room and the message: “Help. There’s a chicken on the loose and we are desperately trying to find him.”
— Burger King (@BurgerKing) April 27, 2014
Disappointing US sales have prompted Burger King to utilize bolder strategies. While the former Subservient Chicken campaign consisted of television commercials coupled with the website, the new campaign will primarily be focused on social media in order to appeal to a younger generation. “It’s the 10 year anniversary and we want to celebrate our new Chicken Big King sandwich, truly in epic fashion,” said Eric Hirschhorn.
Image via YouTube