2021 Brand Experience & Activation


Short List
Product/ServiceBURGER KING
Category B01. Use of Ambient Media: Small Scale
Entrant INGO Stockholm, SWEDEN
Idea Creation INGO Stockholm, SWEDEN
Media Placement INGO Stockholm, SWEDEN
Name Company Position
Björn Ståhl INGO CCO
Max Hultberg INGO Art Director
Magnus Ivansson INGO Copywriter
Simon Stefansson INGO Planner
Stefan Kindberg INGO Creative Technologist
Anna Baker INGO Account manager
Rickard Allstrin INGO Account executive
Frida Nordström Millton PR
Filip Enochson Miltton PR
Susanne Persson Verizon Media PR

Why is this work relevant for Brand Experience & Activation?

A few years ago, a particular clown got abruptly canceled from his long-standing job at a certain hamburger chain. This Halloween he is back – at Burger Kings toilets in Sweden. If you said "Cancelled clown" three times in front of the mirror – a scary clown showed up accompanied by sound and light effects. Creating an in restaurant experience using the restroom mirrors as media. The idea is a play on the legendary game “Bloody Mary” where the ghost of Mary is said to appear in a mirror if you call on her three times.


Halloween is important for Burger King Sweden, and every year Burger King the brief is pretty much the same - bring in customers during this week. Usually Burger King has special offers for Halloween, but this year we needed to come up with something else. One week before Halloween we teased about the rumor that, "Ronald will appear if you say canceled clown three times in front of the mirror at a Burger King toilet" but we did not where. It’s a play on the legendary game “Bloody Mary” where Mary is said to appear in a mirror when her name is chanted repeatedly. The legend of Bloody Mary emerged in the early 1960s as an adolescent party game and has proven a natural for adaptation into popular novels, stories, and movies and series like Paranormal Activity

Describe the creative idea (20% of vote)

In 2016 McDonald’s retired their mascot, Ronald McDonald. But for Halloween rumors had it he had made a comeback at Burger King restrooms. All you had to do was repeat the phrase ‘cancelled clown’ three times in front of the restroom mirror – just like in the myth of ‘Bloody Mary’. After some teasers was released people came to selected Burger King restaurants in Sweden and Denmark to see if the myth was true. And it was. To achieve the effect we installed smart mirrors with a screen behind with the animation of our version of the clown. Voice detection software detected if the phrase was said. The lights dimmed and sound was played to make the experience even scarier.

Describe the strategy (20% of vote)

Our studies showed: 1. Our main competitors attract bigger parties of people to a bigger extent than what Burger King do (more people, more revenues). 2. People under 30 visit fast food chain more often than the rest of the population. 3. They mostly go with one or more friends/family when they visit. 4. They look for instagramable experiences when they navigate through things to do. We concluded that we needed to create something that went beyond the product and focused more on being an enjoyable moment for a bigger group. We therefore wanted to make our restaurants an attraction you wanted to visit because of its Halloween focus. As we mentioned earlier many have gathered friends and families for the holiday and want to have things to do and visit. We thought we could steal visits from our competitors by making a more fun and scary visit.

Describe the execution (30% of vote)

Implementation: We created and installed video mirrors with a new voice-recognition software in Burger King toilets. It was trained to listen out for the phrase 'cancelled clown’. If uttered three times, the lights of the toilet dimmed down hauntingly, and an eerie Ronald McDonald appeared. We then created a teaser video and teaser images which we sent to selected journalists/influencers and promoted through BKs social media. It encouraged people to go into the restrooms at Burger King restaurants across Sweden and Denmark and say the words "canceled clown" three times to summon the spirit of Ronald. We where deliberately being vague about the mirrors locations in order not to spoil the surprise. As an extra incentive everyone doing the spooky experience was rewarded with a treat. Placement and scale: Installation: 15 restaurants at Burger Kings in Sweden and Denmark. Teaser film/stills: OLV, Instagram, Facebook

List the results (30% of vote)

90+ activated mirror per restaurant* 26 million earned media** 89+ written articles** 6 billion media impressions** * Internal Burger King data **Verizon Media