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Brand Analysis – McDonald’s. Brand History. 1940 – McDonald’s Bar-B- Que opens in San Berdardino , California 1948 – McDonald’s was reopened with a reduced, nine-item menu 1954 – Businessman Ray Kroc expressed interest in expanding the business

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brand history
Brand History
  • 1940 – McDonald’s Bar-B-Que opens in San Berdardino, California
  • 1948 – McDonald’s was reopened with a reduced, nine-item menu
  • 1954 – Businessman Ray Kroc expressed interest in expanding the business
  • 1958 – McDonald’s sells its 100 millionth burger, after only a decade of operation
  • 1961 – New McDonald’s logo introduced, inspired by the red and white of the buildings
  • 1962 – First indoor seating in Denver, Colorado gives customers the opportunity to ‘dine-in’
  • 1963 – The 500thMcDonald’s restaurant was opened in Toledo, Ohio
  • 1966 – First McDonald’s commercial, featuring Ronald McDonald, was released
  • 1967 – McDonald’s becomes an international company, with stores opened in Canada and Puerto Rico
  • 1968 - McDonald’s began supporting Olympians by airlifting burgers to where they were competing. The 1,000th restaurant was opened in Des Plaines, Illinois. The new McDonald’s building design is introduced to replace the old red and white buildings.
  • 1969 – The now-famous Golden Arches received massive emphasis, and all old red and white buildings were replaced

McDonald’s accredited founder:

Ray Kroc

1000th McDonald’s store, Des Plaines, Illinois

First McDonald’s Logo

brand history1
Brand History
  • 1971 – The ‘McDonald’s Gang’ was created
  • 1974 – The first Ronald McDonald House was opened in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • 1975 – The first McDonald’s drive-thru is made to accommodate the soldiers in Sierra Vista, Arizona
  • 1978 – 5000th restaurant is opened in Japan
  • 1979 – Happy Meals make their debut
  • 1983 – By this time, McDonald’s were now found in 32 countries worldwide
  • 1990 – Ray Kroc is named one of the ‘100 most important Americans of the 21st century’
  • 1996 – is launched
  • 2003 – The ‘I’m Lovin’ It’ ad campaign is launched in Munich, Germany
  • 2006 – Nutritional information is added to packaging
  • 2008 – McDonald’s instigates a global packaging redesign
  • 2009 – McCafe goes international
  • 2010 – McDonald’s customers are offered free Wi-Fi in-store in the USA. The 300th Ronald McDonald House is opened in St Louis, Missouri

McDonald’s ‘McCafe’ coffee

St Louis RMH

Star Trek themed Happy Meal

original market
Original Market
  • The first McDonald’s was in San Bernardino, California, on Route 66. This location attracted tourists and was an alleged hang out area for local teenagers old enough to drive
  • The McDonald’s of the ‘40s and ’50s catered to the growing number of civilians with cars by making their restaurants ‘self-serve’ and employing carhops to bring out the customers’ food
  • Main drawing card of McDonald’s was the fast and efficient service (the use of ‘Speedee’ as a mascot, uncomfortable indoor seating, if any, to force customers to move on quickly)
  • In the early years of McDonald’s, business owners realised the use of carhops were limiting the diversity of their customers to teenagers and young adults who were more interested in flirting with the waitresses than buying food
  • Once the carhops were removed from the service, McDonald’s was able to pursue its ideal target market: suburban families
market change
Market Change
  • 1966 saw Ronald McDonald become the new McDonald’s mascot, further increasing the brand’s appeal to children
  • The introduction of dining zones in about 2005 in restaurants allowed customers to stay longer if they wish and the offer of free Wi Fi in 2010 gave people further reason to choose McDonald’s, and proved the companies adaptability to changing times
  • McDonald’s started to introduce packaging with nutritional information in 2005 as a result of the increasing public concern for the health of the food available and the 2004 movie ‘Super Size Me’ which exposed the health risks of consuming McDonald’s food
  • McCafe’s became wide-spread in 2009, drawing in even more customers
  • McDonald’s now caters to all cultural groups (Kosher McDonald’s in Jerusalem, Halal menus in Arab countries, ‘Maharaja Mac’ in India made with lamb or chicken to comply with religious beliefs)

Presents McDonald’s as a healthy and delicious meal that uses only ‘top-quality, real, locally produced ingredients’

  • Highly informative logical appeal, hints that these meals have been approved by the Commonwealth Department of Health (when in fact the ingredients listed only form the basis of essential food groups when consumed individually)
  • Attempts to remove any doubt in consumers minds about the healthiness of the meals, and therefore remove the guilt associated with buying and consuming McDonald’s (uses words like ‘real, 100%, locally-grown’)
  • Attention grabbing title (large white lettering on a black background) Use of rhyming (Wholesome, have some) makes the ad memorable and likely to be repeated
  • Includes images of most of the raw ingredients that enhance the illusion of healthiness
  • The burger shown on this ad is perfectly composed and hyper-real, heightens consumer expectations and enhances desire to purchase the product
  • This particular ad would not be very effective in today’s society, because people are now aware of how unhealthy McDonald’s is, and the fact that consumers just don’t seem to respond positively to logical appeals any more
2003 i m lovin it
2003 - I’m Lovin’ It
  • Adapted to the teenage demographic by incorporating elements of pop culture (the recruitment of Justin Timberlake, one of the most popular singers of the time, to sing for the campaign and his brief appearance in the ad, used actors who would stereotypically represent all different socio-economic and cultural backgrounds)
  • Video montage of primarily teenagers and young adults engaging in ‘cool’ and fun activities, often including food available at McDonald’s (this gives audiences the impression that McDonald’s can be associated with their daily lives)
  • Upbeat, catchy tune and lyrics guarantee memorability and its subsequent reuse in future campaigns (the tagline ‘I’m Lovin’ It’ is still used at the end of most modern-day McDonald’s advertising campaigns)
  • Employs product placement techniques in almost every scene (many actors are eating McDonald’s food, occasional flashes of red and yellow on actors clothes, in the background etcetera)
  • The campaign was conceived by a German-based McDonald’s advertising agency Heye& Partner, which is a member of DDB Worldwide Communications Group, Inc
  • Created in response to claims that McDonald’s was losing its relevance in modern society
2003 premium salads
2003 – Premium Salads
  • This product was created in response to the changing consumer demands for healthier meal options at McDonald’s
  • Newman’s Own low-fat sauces (popular celebrity at the time)
  • Green background makes the products seem more healthy and organic, entices the more health-conscious to eat at McDonald’s
  • At first, it is not clear that it is a McDonald’s ad, as it lacks the attention-grabbing and garish red and yellow that the brand is famous for. It is comparatively subtle and aesthetically pleasing (however, it does still include subtle reds)
  • Carefully cooked, arranged and presented to be as appealing as possible and to create a desire within consumers for the product
  • Logical informative appeal, more writing than usual for modern advertisements
targeting children
  • Ronald McDonald was introduced as a mascot in 1966, making McDonalds a more appealing place for children
  • 1971 saw the introduction of the ‘McDonalds Gang’ (Ronald McDonald, Grimace, Hamburgler, Birdie and various others)
  • In 1979, Robert Berstien invented the concept of the Happy Meal. The inclusion of a ‘surprise toy’ and the colourful, fun packaging encouraged likelihood of children using the ‘nag factor’
  • McDonald’s began releasing movie-themed toys with their Happy Meals
  • The placement of a playground at every McDonald’s store is another enticement for children
  • Most McDonald’s restaurants include a party room, which gives children the option to have a birthday party at McDonald’s
ronald mcdonald
Ronald McDonald
  • According to one survey, 96% of all school kids in the United States of America recognise Ronald McDonald
  • Several direct-to-video movies were released during 1998 to 2003 and featured Ronald McDonald and the ‘McDonald’s Gang’
  • As McDonalds expanded internationally, Ronald McDonald was altered to fit into the different cultures and societies.
  • In Japan, he is called ‘Donald McDonald’, because Japanese have difficulty producing a plain ‘r’ sound
  • The Thailand Ronald McDonald statue outside stores greets guests with the traditional Thai ‘wai’ gesture, instead of the Western ‘wave’ greeting or the statue posing happily on a bench
targeting adults
Targeting Adults
  • Shown as an affordable and fast meal alternative
  • Recent introductions of ‘healthier’ options and McCafe’s around the world appeal to older audiences
  • McDonald’s restaurants that include McCafe’s appear to offer a child and parent friendly environment
  • Drive-thru coffees, breakfast menus and 24-hour service providefor travellers, business people and shift workers

Sophisticated lettering adds class and appeals to older audiences, dark, rich colours

Use of the colour green which is generally associated with health

ronald mcdonald house charity
Ronald McDonald House Charity
  • The first RMH was opened in 1974 in Philadelphia
  • RMHC donation boxes are located in every store
  • Provides a place for families to stay while their sick children are receiving hospital care
future trends
Future Trends
  • McDonald’s has proven itself to be a highly versatile and its high success is a direct product of the company’s ability to change and grow with its customers, so it is highly likely to remain in business for the next 20 years at least
  • Ronald McDonald will eventually be phased out completely and replaced by a more modern mascot that appeals to today’s children
  • McDonald’s may revert to its original focus point of providing ‘fast and efficient’ service of the 40’s and 50’s stores (purely drive-in/thru to adapt to the busy modern lifestyle)
  • Focus may shift to increasing the sentimentality in older generations (Fast Food Generation) of dining at McDonald’s

McDonald’s locations in the USA