McDonald’s all-day breakfast initiative had an impact on restaurant industry ad spending even before it began. Total restaurant ad spending was $1.553 billion in Q3, down 1.1% from the same period last year but essentially unchanged from Q2 this year, according to Kantar Media.
Restaurants did better than total U.S. advertising spending, which declined 3.9% in Q3 to $36.4 billion. For the first nine months of 2015, U.S. ad spending is 4% lower than during 2014.
While total restaurant spending was off 1.1% compared with a year ago, advertising investments by quick-service restaurants declined by 2.5% in Q3. Kantar says this resulted from spending cutbacks by two of the largest advertisers: McDonald’s and Subway. McDonald’s reduction was in anticipation of major ad spending at the beginning of Q4 behind the October 6 introduction of all-day breakfast.
Not waiting for that rollout were two breakfast-centered chains, Denny’s and IHOP, which increased Q3 ad spending by 46% and 25%, respectively. “Their amplified marketing support appears to be a reaction to higher breakfast spending from several QSR chains and the anticipation of McDonald’s launch of an all-day breakfast menu,” Kantar says in a release detailing Q3 spending.
All this points to the likelihood that restaurant advertising spending in the last three months of 2015 will be record-setting.
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Burger King has added a true chicken burger (not a chicken breast andwich) to its menu for a limited time. The Flame Grilled Chicken Burger spotlights the brand’s open-flame grills. Toppings are tomato, lettuce, mayo, ketchup, pickles and sliced white onion on a soft, toasted brioche bun. Suggested price is $3.79, but it will be on Burger King’s popular “2 for $5” menu, along with the double-patty Big King, Big Fish Sandwich and Extra Long Cheeseburger.
I’ll bet that Burger King uses this new chicken burger patty to create a chicken Big King double-decker. McDonald’s has offered chicken versions of its Big Mac in Europe but hasn’t brought the idea here yet. We’ll see who does it first.
Wendy’s has a year-end addition to its menu as well: the Black Bean Burger. The patty is a blend of black beans, corn, roasted peppers and spices that’s topped with pepper-Jack cheese, ranch sauce, tomato and greens on a 7-grain bun. It’s at participating locations now.