New Burger King features lots of new stuff and some familiar mistakes (sigh)

October 9, 2009 by Dave Haynes


Burger King has announced its new store formats. There’s a definite shift to digital in the new 20/20 format it expects all stores to slowly take on, but even with ALL the money that would have been spent and ALL the evidence out there now, it looks like some age-old goofiness persists.

There are cool LCD screens embedded right at tables, and a screen in a lounge area. But unless the photos that were made available are terribly misleading, it looks like the the digital marketing screens are forlorn little things stuck up high and in a corner as after-thoughts. It is not clear, at all, whether the menu boards are digital, but the smaller screens certainly suggest they are not. Why else would they exist???

In a word: “Aaargh!”  

They’re too small. One is up higher than a basketball backboard. The other is parked off to the side, and in no way lined up with the natural sightlines of the cash line on the other end of the counter.


I would love to get more detail but BK has not even posted its own news on its corporate website, so it’s very hard to tell what the mix really is. The revamp costs between $300K and $600K for store operators, and testing shows 12 to 15 point sales boosts. Based on the thin margins in the fast food business, that’s a LOT of Whoppers.

Hopefully, the menu boards are indeed LCDs and the ROI model was there. With 12,000 stores to cut over that would be 36,000 screens and a whole lot of software licenses for someone, and a good signal to the fast-food industry to start cutting over their own backlit sign menu boards to digital.   

Leave a comment