Burger King South Africa is promoting its BK Jr. Meals for kids with collectible play cards that come to life with augmented reality (AR) dinosaurs when scanned with a mobile device, per Media Update. Each of the 25 cards shows a 3-D animation of a dinosaur superimposed on a real background seen through a smartphone camera.
The burger chain has a special BK Dino App that can be downloaded from Apple’s App Store or Google Play to unlock the AR experiences and to hear what each dinosaur may have sounded like. App users can learn how to pronounce the names of dinosaurs like the velociraptor, triceratops and tyrannosaurus rex, and learn facts about them.
Ezelna Jones, head of marketing at Burger King South Africa, said the dinosaur experience shows the burger chain is embracing the need for change in meeting the needs of kids. Developer BizAR Reality created the cards and app for Burger King South Africa.
Burger King’s BK Dino App and collectible cards for kids meals shows how toy promotions are evolving among fast-food chains as parents and a growing number of kids have smartphones. Today’s tech-savvy kids are growing up in a world of AR gaming like Pokemon Go and social media apps like Snapchat that have prominent AR features like masks, lenses and filters.
The BK Dino App not only lets kids see 3-D animations of dinosaurs in their real-world surroundings, but also lets them take screen grabs to share with their friends on social media, according to a parenting blogger in South Africa. Organic content on social media is an important way for brands to get in front of potential new customers. However, because of the privacy concerns around social media for children, a lot portion of the target audience for this promotion may not be active on social media.
Burger King has a strong presence on social media, according to a report by ShareIQ, an earned media performance platform for brands. The chain racked up 547,000 likes on Instagram during Q1 2018, putting it behind Domino’s and Chick-Fil-A on the image-sharing platform, but ahead of McDonald’s, Subway and Taco Bell. On Facebook, Burger King was No. 2 behind Taco Bell for reactions thank's to the burger chain's emphasis on celebrity endorsements. However, the brand’s content overall gets a lot fewer reactions per post, ShareIQ found.
Toy promotions are a major way that quick-service restaurants appeal to kids. McDonald’s, the world’s biggest fast-food chain with more than 37,000 locations, for many years has been the world’s largest distributor of toys, per Motley Fool. The chain was estimated to include a toy in 20% of its orders, showing the importance of Happy Meals to its sales.