It’s nice to see McDonalds getting creative with advertising beyond the controlled environment of a YouTube video or a sterile burger Ad filmed and Photoshopped to perfection. With that off my chest, I can now praise the simple, yet clever execution which no doubt generated location specific conversation around McDonalds in Canada and effectively conveyed their brand message: Summer drinks at McDonalds cost $1.
What I particularly liked is the level of involvement and the ‘Offline’ consumer journey. First and foremost, the branding was spot on, not over the top – but by using the famous ‘Golden Arches’ it clearly stamped McDonalds name to the spectacle, in a creative yet environmentally friendly way (and let’s face it, this is one company that needs to prove itself in this area). Next the idea of the ice, in my opinion was entirely appropriate for a Summer day, which of course induced hours of interactive fun and deep brand engagement. Finally the $1 coins themselves, of course delivered the direct advertising message. I do believe after seeing this installation, hearing about it and especially after prying your own $1 coin free, the fact that drinks are $1 all Summer long at McDonalds in Canada will remain in consumers’ latent thoughts for at least 3 months to come.
While I do also believe a simple idea is often all that is needed to effectively promote an Advertising message, I have one criticism of the campaign. It is something that I see all too often these days– the failure of a flawless, innovate Offline execution to then shift conversation to an Online hub, where word of mouth could be further amplified. I am aware that the message here was country specific (ie $1 drinks may not be on offer at other McDonalds worldwide), but there are several ways to manipulate Online conversation to ensure it retains a local focus. My suggestion would have been to replace the $1 coins with $1 tokens that could be used within McDonalds stores, and thus increased in-store traffic (which in turn could have raised overall sales of more than just drinks). Whether changing the $1 coins to $1 tokens for McDonalds would have reduced an individual’s desire to ‘pick away’ at the ice is debatable – but at present I can’t see a direct relation between a potential consumer getting a $1 coin and then having this convert in to a direct sale. Overall though…I’m Lovin’ It..(sorry!)