Hospitality Business Magazine

Wendy’s brings fresh burgers and fresh music

WENDYS_KAHUNA_30 SG_001Wendy’s has enlisted new technology, King Kapisi and some superstar Vodafone Warriors to create a fresh new Big Kahuna campaign that sees music made out of burger ingredients.

To help promote the Big Kahuna, Wendy’s and ad agency &Some called on hip hop artist King Kapisi, some well-known Vodafone Warriors players and a device called a ‘MaKey MaKey’ to create a buzz around the popular fast food option.

Invented by students at MIT, the MaKey MaKey allows users to turn everyday objects into touchpads for playing music.

Launched on Sunday 15 Feb, Wendy’s Kahuna Fresh Beats TV commercial sees Vodafone Warriors players Konrad Hurrell, Bodene Thompson, Suaia Matagi and Raymond Faitala-Mariner demonstrating how “fresh beats” can be made using fresh ingredients including pineapple, lettuce, and a beef patty. Legendary Wendy’s ambassador Kiwi Dave also makes an appearance.

Wendy’s marketing manager Joanne Hall says the family-owned chain was looking for a quirky way to promote the burger while demonstrating that fresh is better in an entertaining way.

“We source most of our ingredients locally and are the only QSR chain to offer fresh Quality Mark sourced New Zealand beef and whole chicken breast fillets as well as natural cheese, but one of our challenges is getting this message across to customers.

“We came across the MaKey MaKey online. They used bananas to make music and we’ve taken it a step further by showing how our fresh quality ingredients can be used to make great sounds.”

Involved behind the scenes, King Kapisi taught the players how to use the equipment and produced the backing soundtrack. Outtakes on the website show him playing the MaKey MaKey and interacting with customers at Wendy’s Te Atatu store.

Hall says the hip hop stalwart is also the ‘expert’ and ‘voice’ in a series of ‘how to’ videos on the microsite, on which users can mix and lay down their own tracks using the Kahuna burger sounds.

“King Kapisi has an amazing musical pedigree and his values align closely with Wendy’s. He was able to help coach some great sounds out of the burger and the guys, but also contributed some really good ideas to the campaign.”

Kapisi, who is busy putting the finishing touches on a new album ‘Hip Hop Lives Here’, says he enjoyed being part of the project. “With Wendy’s, everything’s made fresh and 99 percent of ingredients are New Zealand made which a lot of people don’t realize. And working with the Vodafone Warriors was awesome, they were really into it and having heaps of fun. I was just showing them how to work the set-up properly.”

The Aucklander says he also enjoyed the reactions of the customers who were in-store during filming. “Some of the younger ones were so funny. I overheard one say “Dad I can’t believe you can hit buns and get beats!” and another say she was going to learn how to play the burger.”

You can check out what King Kapisi and the Vodafone Warriors created at and on TVNZ, SKY, Facebook and YouTube.

Would-be DJs can also have a go at making some fresh beats themselves. Just drag and drop the sound clips on the website, loop them and layer them up. Then share your track online and go in the draw to win one of 10 MaKey MaKeys and other great prizes including Audio Technica earbuds and even the Hawaiian shirts worn by the Vodafone Warriors in the TVC.