Tongue-in-cheek humour goes wrong for Burger King UK but works fine for Zomato India, here’s why

Burger King Zomato women's day tweet

While Burger King UK had to pull down their tweet after facing flak for sexist copy, Zomato India was able to pull off a similar stunt with relative ease, here’s how the two were similar and yet quite different.

On the surface, Burger King UK’s ‘Women belong in the kitchen’ and Zomato India’s, ‘Yes, women should be in the kitchen’ International Women’s Day tweet copies were similar — they were eye-catching, inherently controversial and meant to cause a stir.

Burger King UK tweet

However, there was a key difference.

Burger King explained their stance in the second tweet on the thread, Zomato India had followed up the screaming copy in the same tweet in small lettering: ‘grabbing a belan to beat up everyone who says so’.

For Burger King, it was the first tweet that blew up significantly via RTs and screenshots.

Beyond this, there was another major issue that contributed to Burger King receiving flak. Their second tweet began with: ‘If they want to, of course. Yet, only 20% of chefs are women’. The use of the words ‘want to’ and ‘yet’ was in direct conflict with their intention of supporting women chefs with culinary scholarships.

Result? Burger King had to pull down their tweet and apologise.

While Zomato India did face flak, it was minimal in comparison.

Also Read: Voltas Beko draws flak for ‘sexist’ dishwasher ad

The two brands posted the same on Instagram too. Burger King UK has not yet deleted their Instagram post.

If one were to read their full-page print ad, the scenario would be much different. They were able to put across their point perfectly in long-form. It was in the tweets were they failed to bring out the nuance — a probable case of communication getting lost in optimisation as per medium.

Zomato India was able to save itself from such intense scrutiny by being more careful with the creative copy and its placement.


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