2020/2021 Winners & Shortlists


Product/ServiceSPICY MENU
CategoryTravel, Leisure, Retail, Restaurants & Fast Food Chains

Why is this work relevant for Media?

With a minimum budget to promote our new spicy menu to a young generation in Saudi, our solution had to outsmart deep-pocketed competitors. So, went after young Saudis online, pretended our account was hacked and through light-hearted trolling of one of their football stars, we shifted a heated conversation from football to our even hotter spicy menu.


The Saudi QSR segment is one of the most challenging in the world. And with new brands popping up frequently, the competition is intense. Success in this market means continuous innovations and being able to satisfy the taste preferences of Saudis. And today a lot of their demand is for spicy food. This is why every brand, big or small, pushes for their version of a “spicy menu”. To steal the show from the competition, Burger King has just created the spiciest menu of them all. So spicy that it will make the manliest of men cry. Our brief was to promote and differentiate Burger King’s new spicy menu and capture the attention of Saudis when every brand is trying to do the same.

Describe the creative idea / insights (30% of vote)

Our new spicy menu is so fiery that even the manliest of men are supposed to shed tears when trying it. But, men in the patriarchal society of Saudi are not supposed to cry, because this is perceived as a sign of weakness. However, through research, we discovered that even the most masculine of men in Saudi like Sami Al Jaber – one of the most famous footballers – have admitted crying before. We used this fact as a starting point to challenge the notion of masculinity, leading to our creative idea: Who said men don’t cry?

Describe the strategy (20% of vote)

Our audience was young Saudis. However, because the new spicy menu is supposed to make the manliest of men cry, we thought of narrowing down this audience to focus primarily on young men. A population that are very proud of their masculinity and are preoccupied with other important “manly things”. Things like cars, online challenges, and heated football conversations. Our strategy was to ride on the most trending “manly” conversation that can be linked to our menu’s proposition: So spicy, it will make even men cry. At the time of our brief, young men were busy trolling or defending Al-Hilal football club – Saudi Arabia’s number one team – who had lost the league. Which was the perfect opportunity to spice up the ongoing conversation and then high-jack it to our menu.

Describe the execution (20% of vote)

To bring our strategy to life, we needed to lock down the link between Al-Hilal’s defeat and men crying. And that link was Sami Al Jaber, Al-Hilal’s previous striker, coach, and a symbol of masculinity in Saudi, who previously admitted crying while in shower. We then deleted our previous posts, unfollowed everyone and followed just Sami Al Jaber; making our Twitter account seem hacked by Al-Hilal rival fan. Then we poured gasoline on fire with a tweet: ‘When in shower, do you cry?’. Believing our account was hacked, fans went crazy, and even Twitter fell for it. We fueled the conversation further through random ‘crying’ tweets, along with fun content showing Saudi men comfortable with their tears. Our content went viral, and fans waited for our next eye-watering post … we finally revealed our Spicy Menu asking: “Who said men don’t cry?”, “our spicy menu, a taste worth crying for.”

List the results (30% of vote)

Online Engagement results: • 5.6 million views across Twitter and YouTube. • 45.5 million impressions • More than $1 million in PR value. • 100% community growth. • In 8 days, we had more brand mentions than the entire mentions of 2018. • From second worst share of voice in the industry to the most talked about brand among direct and indirect competitors in only 8 days Business Results: Over-achieved our sales objective by more than 35%. Broke sales records in some branches and went out of stock in key branches.


Name Company Role
Chafic Haddad J. Walter Thompson Chief Creative Operations Officer
Rayyan Aoun J. Walter Thompson Executive Creative Director
Firas Ghannam J. Walter Thompson Associate Creative Director
Ahmad Shanaa J. Walter Thompson Senior Art Director
Abdulaziz Almutairi  J. Walter Thompson Senior Copywriter
Abdulhadi Tulimat  J. Walter Thompson Junior Art director 
Alaedin Abas J. Walter Thompson Social Media Director
Joe Aboudaher J. Walter Thompson Head of production KSA
Toufic Bassil J. Walter Thompson Business Director
Abdullah Issa J. Walter Thompson Account Manager
Maria Elamiri J. Walter Thompson Account Executive
Ali Khalil J. Walter Thompson Strategic Planning Director
Robert Dreghorn Burger King Marketing Director
Carlo Angelini Burger King Marketing Manager UAE
Mark Anthony Villagracia Burger King Designer
Albanderi Mohammed Alyamani Burger King Marketing Manager KSA
Karim Hisham Mediacom Media Executive
Wael Madani J. Walter Thompson TV Producer
Ahmad Mokh Mediacom Media Planner
Marwan Abinader Forward Film Director
Forward Film Forward Film Production House
Video URL