McDonald's Restaurants : advertising & marketing profile

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The McDonald's brand is almost as universal as Coke. The group's 36,000th restaurant opened in 2014, and those golden arches now spread across 119 countries, welcoming some 69m customers every day. Not enough, the company still says. On any day McDonald's still only serves less than 1% of the world population, leaving plenty of room for growth. However profits fell dramatically in 2002 and the group took unprecedented steps to close under-performing outlets, even pulling out of a few markets altogether. That move appeared to have paid off by 2004, and McDonald's reported strong growth for much of the following decade, even in the face of an economic downturn. A key factor was the broadening of the menu with an enhanced range of breakfast items, healthier chicken and salad meals and premium beverages. The company also pushed aggressively into the coffee shop sector, in several key international markets as well as the US. However the reviving US economy brought fresh challenges from 2013 onwards. Domestic sales suddenly stalled, despite a frenetic burst of menu innovation, as customers moved away to less established rivals, while international performance was dented by a variety of different challenges in regional markets. Even after several changes of management, those troubles have yet to be fully resolved.

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Who are the competitors of McDonald's? See Restaurants & Bars for other companies. Also see Global Brands

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Recent stories from Adbrands Weekly Update:

Adbrands Weekly Update 21st Jun 2018: Cannes Lions 2018. The first batch of winners were announced from Cannes Lions 2018. (See the full run-down, including all the Gold, Silver and Bronze winners at the Cannes Lions 2018 website). There were two Grand Prix winners in Outdoor. Canadian agency Cossette was awarded multiple prizes for its brilliantly simple billboards for McDonald's, which used the curves of the instantly recognisable logo to provide directions for the nearest outlet. Comedy Central's Daily Show with Trevor Noah, from Viacom, was the other winner with a savagely satirical commentary on the current US President's Twitter addiction. Under the title of The Donald J Trump Presidential Twitter Library, the channel mounted a three-day event in which all Trump's Tweets were framed for inspection.

Adbrands Weekly Update 31st May 2018: Ads of the Week: "Ramadan 2018". The world's biggest brands know full well the need to adapt to local sensitivities if they're aiming to stay big. McDonald's and Coca-Cola are among the several global players with new ads out now that acknowledge Ramadan. Here's a charming spot from DDB Singapore for McDonald's, also notable for its illustration of McDelivery, an especially important strand to the fast-feeder's business throughout Asia. Here in the UK, we have yet to see a single such McDelivery messenger; perhaps the ubiquity of McDonald's branches has something to do with that, and also the daunting size of those backpacks...

Adbrands Social Media 23rd May 2018: "Moments". TBWA Paris's campaigns for "McDo" - as the French call McDonald's - are always worth a look. They tend to fall into two categories: either out-and-out humour or lighthearted meditations on the intersection between everyday life and those iconic Golden Arches. This latest falls into the latter camp, a nicely observed little tale of what you need to do to get a little privacy when you share an apartment with three other guys. Well played, sir.

Adbrands Weekly Update 8th Mar 2018: McDonald's promoted UK chief marketing officer Alistair Macrow to a new role as CMO, high growth markets. These are eight important countries including China, Italy, Poland, Russia, South Korea and Spain. Emily Somers, VP, marketing & food development, becomes top marketer in the UK.

Adbrands Weekly Update 1st Feb 2018: McDonald's turnaround is holding firm. The fast-feeder reported a strong final quarter, with global comparable sales up 5.5% including 4.5% in the US. Systemwide sales were up 8% in constant currencies. Those figures were all better than expected, though reported revenues were down as a result of continuing sales of outlets to franchisees, and net income was dented by a tax adjustment. For the year, net income rose 11% (despite the final quarter adjustment) to $5.2bn, while operating income was up by 23%. Revenues slipped to $22.8bn reflecting refranchising.

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