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Journal of the International Association for Semiotic Studies / Revue de l'Association Internationale de Sémiotique

Editor-in-Chief: Danesi, Marcel

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Volume 2018, Issue 224


Transmedia branding: Brands, narrative worlds, and the mcwhopper peace agreement

A. Carlos Scolari
Published Online: 2018-07-20 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/sem-2016-0216


In recent years there has been much discussion about the links between brands and storytelling. This article briefly describes transmedia storytelling, reflects on some exemplary works to understand its cultural dynamics, and then focuses on one particular aspect: the development of transmedia strategies in branding. This article delves into that area where branding melts and recombines with storytelling, keeping an eye on transmedia worlds throughout. After presenting a semio-narratological analytical model the article applies the categories to Burger King’s successful and internationally recognized McWhopper campaign (Campaign, Brief. 2015. Y&R’s Burger King “McWhopper” campaign: How a big idea from little New Zealand went global (interview to Tom Paine). Campaign Brief December 31. http://www.campaignbrief.com/ (accessed 16 October 2016)). The analysis spans from the construction of McWhopper’s storytelling to the positioning of competitors in this particular transmedia narrative world. The article concludes with a series of reflections and recommendations for applying semio-narratologic categories to transmedia branding analysis and design.

Keywords: transmedia; storytelling; branding; transmedia worlds; narrative; user-generated contents


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About the article

Published Online: 2018-07-20

Published in Print: 2018-09-25

Citation Information: Semiotica, Volume 2018, Issue 224, Pages 1–17, ISSN (Online) 1613-3692, ISSN (Print) 0037-1998, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/sem-2016-0216.

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