McDonald's faces up to trade secrets
Global - When McDonald's Canada launched its "Our Food, Your Questions" campaign earlier this month, it made a bold move to give "straight answers to tough questions about our food".
On the campaign's microsite, consumers posted queries such as "Is your beef actually 100% pure beef or is that just the name of the company?".
To answer these and other questions, McDonald's posted a video response showing Will Ramjass, assistant general counsel of McDonald's Canada, going to a corporate search house to find out whether a company titled "100% pure beef" actually existed. The findings were negative.
In other video responses to consumer queries, McDonald's put its Chicken McNuggets under the microscope to dispel rumours that its nuggets were made from processed pink sludge of meat and bones ground up with chemicals.
But one video response has been generating buzz lately, with the video being shared and spread on social media sites.
The video is McDonald's response to the question: "Why does your food look different in advertising than what's in the store?" The video was released late last week and has been viewed over five million times on YouTube.
The video showed McDonald's marketing director, Hope Bagozzi, purchasing a Quarter Pounder from its store and taking the burger to its creative agency for an "extreme makeover".
Some of the secrets revealed in the video of the picture-perfect burger were that its sauces were applied with a syringe and imperfections such as stray sesame seeds were photoshopped away.
So was McDonald's move in presenting its consumers with the naked truth the right one?
Brandthink's Teoh Jui Hong, seemed to think so. "By being upfront about how they create their products to be more appetising than it really is, in essence more honest about its spin - they come across as more authentic."
For Teoh, the viral video not only answered the question, but also attempted to give rational reasons on why something is done the way it is done.
Craig J Selby, managing director at Orchan Consulting, applauded the company for its brave initiative to lay its cards on the table.
"Rightly or wrongly, we all have opinions about McDonald's," he said.
"Many of these are not particularly positive, but at the end of the day, we still go back there time and again to get a ‘quick fix' on fast food. So, why does our burger not look like the advertisement?."
"Well, lets be honest - has it ever? We know that advertisers take 'creative license' in preparing their wares, as long as there is a similarity.
"I don't think McDonald's food has ever looked quite as good as its adverts, so asking the question now is rather some decades late," added Selby who viewed the company's move as a positive one.
Alex Ooi, director of reputation management and digital at ROOTS Asia Pacific, added the video received plenty of mixed reactions but if driving conversation was its purpose then it was spot on."Good or bad, I think we can leave that to the millions of fans out there but I do like how courageous they are with their social engagement activities."
Follow us @Marketingeds on Twitter for breaking stories throughout the day.Have something to say? Comment on our Facebook page or contact the writer at firstname.lastname@example.org.
McDonalds Related Stories:
- McDonald’s new hunger for Hong Kong
- McDo asks Filipinos to solve Fries Heist
- Philippines gets in line for free McMuffins
- Nurturing talent in an evolving environment
- Planning successful succession at Talent Management 2013
- The world’s best multi-national companies
- McDonald’s flies high with Angry Birds
- Lee exits Havas to join McDonald's
- Are green events here to stay?
- McDonald’s brands as innovator
- McDonald's prepares for the Olympics
- McDonald’s says it fulfills Olympics dreams
- McDonald's expands Casanova's role
- McDonald’s appoints APMEA president
- Brands reach out to bloggers
- Confession shines light on weary industry
- AOTY Jury Spotlight: Andrew Knott
- IN BRIEF: BM, Suntec, McDonald’s
- Malaysians get serious about nutrition
- Twitter trouble for McDonald's