Pancakes to burgers: IHOP suffers backlash in name change

Wednesday, 13 Jun, 2018

The fast-food chain Wendy's has become notorious for its sassy social media presence in the a year ago, with tweets targeting both McDonald's and Burger King.

And it doesn't stop there.

"We're always going to be known as a breakfast place", IHOP President Darren Rebelez told the Los Angeles Times.

Unfortunately, few people guessed it, and that's exactly because the image of IHOP being a breakfast place held too strong.

IHOP has temporarily changed its Twitter handle to "IHOb".

For now, the IHOP name remains on the chain's 1,671 restaurants across the country, including local outlets in Brainerd, Hixson, Fort Oglethorpe, Cleveland and Dalton, Georgia. The company explains, "Our new burgers are so good, we changed our name". The change is not permanent, a company spokeswoman said, but rather is a move to promote its new burger line. Outlets like CNNMoney wondered why a company whose parent company's stock had risen 25% in the past year would bother changing its name-a move often reserved for mergers or companies in trouble. The decision immediately set off waves of speculation about what the "B" could stand for.

Though the company has been offering burgers since its creation in 1958, IHOP's main motive for revamping the menu item and emphasizing it is to attract a wider audience, according to Chief Marketing Officer Brad Haley.

Professional baseball team the Philadelphia Phillies went to the trouble of making its own name change announcement video that turns the MLB franchise into the "bhillies".

The restaurants already had burgers.

IHOP announced last week it planned to change its name.

And Red Robin, which doesn't have a breakfast menu, teased: "We're as serious about pancakes as IHOb is about burgers". Others pegged the "burgers" gimmick in advance as well. That's like going into a Pizza Hut and ordering a burger.

Burger King took it a step further and altered its logo on all its social media platforms to "Pancake King".

While restaurants like IHOP are able to get customers through the door in the wee morning hours, keeping them coming after 11 a.m. has been a struggle.