The fast food industry has an average Brand Intimacy Quotient of 26.1, below our 15-industry ranking.

Starbucks, Chipotle and McDonald’s are the top three brands in this category, with Starbucks also having the highest percentages of fusing and bonding customers (4 percent and 10 percent, respectively). Chipotle has the largest amount of sharing customers, at 21 percent. Indulgence is the category archetype, in which Starbucks, Baskin-Robbins and Dunkin’ Donuts are the three strongest brands. Chipotle is the preferred brand among men, while women favor Starbucks as do millennials, those 45-64 years old, and those making $100,000+. Subway is the top brand for customers 35-44 years old and those earning $35,000-$74,999.


McDonald’s is currently a more intimate brand than Burger King. McDonald’s has a higher Quotient score, 29.8 compared to Burger King’s 20.8, indicating more McDonald’s customers are intimate with the brand, 26 percent vs. 18 percent for Burger King. McDonald’s also has slightly more fusing customers and more than double the bonding customers of Burger King, as well as more sharing customers. So, in addition to building stronger bonds with its customer base, McDonald’s ranks first in the category for a brand that customers can’t live without. McDonald’s also has stronger associations across some key archetypes; the fast food chain is more associated with enhancement, ritual (which suggests it is more of a daily part of life), identity and indulgence, the category archetype. McDonald’s is also much stronger related to nostalgia. The only archetype in which Burger King is stronger is fulfillment, largely linked to exceeding expectations and service. Additionally, 10 percent of McDonald’s customers are willing to pay 20 percent more for the brand’s products and services, compared to 7 percent for Burger King.



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