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Burger King's Twitch marketing ploy falls flat

It's that one time when the 'King' faced the heat.

Burger King (BK) isn't used to seeing its ad campaigns fail. But its ad to promote its $5 meal on streaming platform Twitch was one such effort.

Created by David Madrid, the ad ran a month ago in July, but it is only in the last one to two days that it has gained traction and not in the way the American fast food giant would have liked.

Twitch is a live streaming platform where you can donate money to a streamer and include a message which is read live by a bot during the stream. Sounds simple enough.

A line in the BK ad says, “Turning Donations Into Ads.” Ironically, the move to tweak the donation feature to its benefits that BK took pride in, has angered people.

The message from BK when it donated the money read, “I donated five bucks so I can say that on the Burger King app you can get a Whopper, small french fries and a small drink for $5.” However, people weren't impressed because of the low donation value and the campaign, in general.

Madrid said in an emailed statement to Ad Age, “This activation was meant to be a fun-spirited experiment on the platform using a new functionality. While it was well-received by the players we engaged with, we value and respect the recent feedback from the Twitch community.”

Ross O'Donovan, a successful streamer with thousands of followers, told the BBC, "It costs a lot more than $5 for a company to partner with a streamer, so it's just very scummy to circumvent that whole thing and do it through a donation.”

O'Donovan also said that the campaign is a slap in the face of streamers, who rely on actual sponsorship deals to make their living.