Andy Warhol’s 15 Minutes Are Up, Say Super Bowl Ad Watchers

by Tom Burg
February 5, 2019

With a current hot retrospective at the Whitney Museum, you might think that Andy Warhol is back and buzzworthy. At least that’s what Burger King’s ad team thought ahead of the Super Bowl. Unfortunately, it seems consumers didn’t share the ad and media world’s enthusiasm for the restaurant chain’s artsy Super Bowl ad featuring the deceased pop artist. In fact, 65% of nearly 400 people who saw the ad didn’t even know who he was.

Alpha, the on-demand user insights platform, tested consumer response to the Burger King #EatLikeAndy ads. According to the results, potential burger buyers think Warhol’s 15 minutes are definitely up.

The challenge, it seems, is that the vast number of people had no idea who the man in the ad was, with 43% of respondents believing that the artist, who died in 1987, is still alive and 24% thinking he was a fictional character.

The confusion continued when consumers were asked for Warhol’s occupation (who is unnamed in the ad) holds. Only 43% of respondents correctly identified him as an artist.

It was all downhill from there. It seems in general the ad was a bad fit for the audience. Only 27% of consumers felt Warhol was a good spokesperson for Burger King and the same number said they felt inspired to eat at Burger King.

During the ad, the notoriously eccentric artist dips his Whopper in Heinz ketchup. However, consumers don’t share his taste in condiment application, with 62% of them saying they wouldn’t want to do the same.

It looks like life is not imitating art for burger eaters or commercial watchers.

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Tom Burg

SVP of Marketing at Alpha, the platform that enables management teams to make data-driven decisions about users, products, and new markets.