Industry News | September 14, 2017 | By Danny Klein | QSR Exclusive Brief

Which Restaurant Chain has the Best Bacon?

Bacon has always been a staple on quick-service menus. flickr: Jack Lyons
Bookmark/Search this post
Email this story Email this story
Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly version

Read More About

It’s no secret that consumers have a favorable view of bacon in quick service. But that’s about where the consensus ends. Quantifind recently pulled data to find out which restaurant chains have the best, and which is the biggest conversation driver. Are those two things related? Hardly.

Out of the national brands in the study, which mined social media platform Twitter for information, Wendy’s customers are far and away the most likely to discuss the brand’s bacon—five and half times more than the average to be exact.

Quantifind uses machine learning to filter out the noise from online conversations and home in on only the signals pertaining to sales. The rest of the rankings, which were compiled by buyer conversations measured over all conversations for that brand in a two-year period (example: Wendy’s customer conversations about bacon/Wendy’s customer conversations), were:

  1. Wendy’s
  2. Subway
  3. Burger King
  4. Shake Shack
  5. Outback Steakhouse
  6. Cracker Barrel
  7. Panera Bread
  8. IHOP
  9. Dunkin’ Donuts
  10. McDonald’s
  11. Pizza Hut
  12. Applebee’s
  13. TGI Fridays
  14. Starbucks

Wendy’s has never shied away from bacon. The chain is home to the Baconator, a double-stacked burger with six thick-cut Applewood smoked bacon strips. The Jr. Bacon Cheeseburger is one of the industry’s most well known value-based items, and was even recently launched in a giant edition. There’s also a Bacon Deluxe, Double Bacon Burger; The Son Of Baconator and a Bacon Queso Cheeseburger have graced the menu. And on the bacon goes.

The question, though, is while the conversation is justified, what is it saying? Quantifind’s data found some interesting notes. Firstly, its SIGNUM buyer sentiment analysis showed that Wendy’s bacon is also discussed negatively most often. It’s not all bad, however. A look at positive and negative sentiment terms showed that the bacon’s taste itself isn’t disappointing guests, it’s the service experience. A problem, Quantifind points out, easier to fix than the flavor.

On the flip side, Bloomin Brands’ Outback Steakhouse turned in the most impressive net positive sentiment score at 81.2 percent.

Here are the rankings:

  1. Outback Steakhouse: 81.20 percent
  2. Shake Shack: 80.75 percent
  3. Cracker Barrel: 67.19 percent
  4. Subway: 54.79 percent
  5. Panera: 51.77 percent
  6. TGI Fridays: 50 percent
  7. Applebees: 45.76 percent
  8. Burger King: 44.26 percent
  9. Starbucks: 42.24 percent
  10. Pizza Hut: 40.63 percent
  11. IHOP: 40.14 percent
  12. Dunkin' Donuts: 39.66 percent
  13. McDonald's: 32.9 percent
  14. Wendy's: 26.14 percent