Nostalgia-Hungry Millennials Convince Burger King to Bring Back Chicken Fries
Looks like complaining on Twitter finally accomplished something.
On Monday, Burger King announced that Chicken Fries would once again be served at participating restaurants nationwide for a limited period of time, with a nine-piece order priced at $2.89. The reintroduction of the product – essentially, chicken strips shaped like fries – is in response to enthusiastic online support for the snack, according to Burger King.
Chicken Fries were first launched in 2005. They were taken off Burger King's menu in 2012, edged out, Bloomberg BusinessWeek theorizes, by the introduction of Crispy Chicken Strips.
BURGER KING CHICKEN FRIES ARE BACK THIS IS NOT A DRILL RT TO SAVE A LIFE http://t.co/EqUik2RBLk— (@unIovabIe) August 11, 2014
However, Burger King underestimated the meal's popularity. After the item was taken off the menu, angry Chicken Fries fans took to Twitter, Facebook and even Change.org to demand Burger King bring back the snack.
Bk literally sent me a package saying thank you for always tweeting about chicken fries When will your fav— ??? (@ow333n) August 11, 2014
“Our fans have spoken, and we had to listen. On peak days we’ve seen one tweet every forty seconds about Chicken Fries, many of them directly petitioning, begging, for us to bring them back,” said Eric Hirschhorn, Burger King's Chief Marketing Officer, in a statement.
My boyfriend just asked me why I'm so happy and it's cus burger kings chicken fries are coming back in three days #crying— elena (@elenabroooke) August 8, 2014
Since social media played such a big role in bringing the Chicken Fries back, it makes sense that Burger King is relying on social media to advertise the limited-time offering. Burger King's Twitter and Tumblr pages have been full of quirky, over-the-top postings clearly aimed at millennial customers. Additionally, the burger chain announced the return of Chicken Fries on Snapchat.
Me when I found out Chicken Fries were back . https://t.co/IgFUStHgv6— ' (@victo_0r) August 12, 2014
In celebration of Chicken Fries return, Burger King is also selling fan gear such as t-shirts, mugs, bumper stickers and temporary tattoos on eBay. The marketing move and Burger King's recent social media blitz are reminiscent of another fast food chain's recent menu roll out: Taco Bell's millennial-geared breakfast menu.
when someone u got over walks into ur life years later #chickenfriesareback— amanda caputo (@urababetbh) August 11, 2014
Earlier this year, Taco Bell managed to cash in on social media savvy teens through products and marketing that were slightly edgy and attempted to be "in touch" with millennial customers. Burger King now has the opportunity to do the same, using a product primed for viral marketing by customers who took to social media to call for its return. Now, Burger Fries just have to be as tasty as customers remember.
Kate Taylor is a reporter at Business Insider. She was previously a reporter at Entrepreneur. Get in touch with tips and feedback on Twitter at @Kate_H_Taylor.