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Wimpy South Africa reaches out to visually impaired with "Braille Burger"

The Wimpy burger chain in South Africa has come up with a novel way to target a new audience — the "Braille Burger," which uses the sesame seeds on the bun to spell out messages for the visually impaired.
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A screengrab from the Wimpy burger chain commercial created by ad agency Metropolitan Republic South Africa. (Screengrab)

The Wimpy burger chain in South Africa has come up with a novel way to target a new audience — the "Braille Burger," which uses the sesame seeds on the bun to spell out messages for the  visually impaired, such as "100 per cent pure beef burger made for you."

Wimpy outlets in the country feature menus in Braille and to advertise the fact, the company launched a viral marketing campaign complete with a YouTube video that shows how the messages are composed, the Globe and Mail reported.

The video features a chef painstakingly arranging sesame seeds on balls of dough, with the end result being a message baked right into the burger bun, customized for the diner who can read Braille.

According to the Huffington Post:

Wimpy then brought burgers using those buns to three institutions for the seeing impaired around South Africa and gave the burgers to 15 blind people. The company filmed these peoples' reactions and made a commercial out of it. The end of the commercial [SPOILER ALERT!] claims that social media spread the positive reactions of the 15 people to a total of 800,000 others.

The Globe and Mail cited a Blind SA statement as praising the campaign, and pointing out that while Wimpy has printed menus in Braille and distributed them on a national basis since 2002, not everyone was aware.

The campaign, aimed at "letting people know that Wimpy is a place where everyone can feel at home" — was the brainchild of ad agency Metropolitan Republic South Africa.

The agency's art director Dale Mullany said the company had been "overwhelmed" by the results.

"The response we had when these people read the message was worth every moment that it took," Mullany said, News.com.au reported.

The HuffPost suggested that campaign felt "vaguely exploitative," and expressed hope that Wimpy "donated serious money to the three institutions."

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/wimpy-braille-burger-south-africa-sesame-seeds-blind