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McDonalds is known today around the world and by every two year old. When they first opened up in 1940 they were a BBQ drive thru. In 1948 they reopened as a hamburger joint and their big advertisement was 15 cent hamburgers. In 1955 the golden arches were designed by architect Stanley Meston, and they did not know at that time they would become the national trademark of McDonalds. The advertising has changed over the years, but the catchy phrases live on and most people would know the company by their slogans. The first advertisement done for McDonalds was the number of hamburgers sold, the first sign read 100 million sold in 1958. Over the years it has changed to billions and billions. By 1962 they were advertising the first come in and sit down McDonalds. The biggest advertising campaign came for McDonald’s in 1966 when they introduced Ronald McDonald in the first television commercials and at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade where Ronald McDonald was sitting in a flying hamburger.
He became an instant hit by children and the franchise grew tremendously in the next few years even to include internationally. In 1971 the advertising grew to add friends for Ronald McDonald to include Hambuglar, Grimace, Mayor McCheese, Captain Crook, and the Big Mac in Ronald McDonald land. The advertising of these new characters created frenzy for children with toys, games, and cartoons. The “Have you had your break today,” advertisement began in 1995, and in 1997 the catch phrase was “Did Someone say McDonalds?” That did not catch on as well as the advertisers expected so in 1998 they changed it to “Made for you,” this is still their slogan today. Advertising the “Made for you,” slogan has benefited the company greatly because even in the recession during 2007-2008 sales to the company still grew. The advertising of McDonalds use to be driven more towards children, but in recent years it has been geared more towards adults with Wi-Fi advertising, the line of McCafés it offers, and the adults menus of hamburgers and salads.
The theory behind this was not only do children want to go to McDonalds but it is a great place for adults to meet, have a meal and work with their computers. Consumers are impacted by McDonalds advertising because of the prices, the look of the food on commercials and billboards, and convenience that your food will be hot and ready, and “Made for you.” When it is a hot day and you are thirsty and you see the commercials or a billboard with a cold soda, and the ice over flowing, and the condensation on the side of the glass, knowing that it is only a dollar and there is a McDonalds on every corner it makes you want one. While you are there getting that drink the pictures on the menu make you hungry. This is how they get the attention of customers and boost sales. They have the largest advertising budget in the United States at $2 billion dollars a year. (O’Brien, 2012) That is why you cannot turn on a radio, television, or drive down the road without seeing a McDonald’s advertisement.
The large advertising budget allows McDonald’s to reach an audience far larger than most fast food chains. This keeps them on top, and adding new items to the menus will keep customers coming back for more. This is found in the once a year campaign of the McRib. The advertising for the sandwich is done about a week before they are in the restaurants and because of the limited time available ads this increases the want for the sandwich. When people are watching a show late at night and seeing the advertisement’s for McDonalds it makes them think they are hungry and should run out to McDonalds to get the hamburger, chicken nuggets, and those world famous french fries along with a cold soda, that is advertised with lots of ice. Now that most McDonalds are open late or 24 hours, this means you can fix your cravings caused by an advertisement any time day or night.
This is exactly the chains plans in advertising. I believe that McDonalds has had great success in their advertising over the years. This is because the success of the company, stock prices that are $100 per share and when you compare them to other fast food chains McDonalds is on the top. (O’BRIEN, 2012) Even though the ways of advertising has changed from radio to television, billboards to internet the messages are all the same. Buy our product it will make you happy, healthy, improve your lives, make you live longer, or fix that late night craving.
I believe the more a product is advertised the more people will want to try it. If it is satisfying to the consumer they will be coming back for more. Having a slogan, jingle, or a character helps keep the advertisement in our minds, and when we hear them we do not even have to be in the room to know what is being advertised on the commercials. I tried this on my daughter while writing this paper and she was able to get almost everyone. This proves the fact that the more they advertise the more the product becomes familiar and people are more comfortable with familiar things.
O’BRIEN, K. (2012, may 4). The Money Issue. Retrieved from The New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/06/magazine/how-mcdonalds-came-back-bigger-than-ever.html?pagewanted=all O’Brien, K. (2012, may 5). The secrets of McDonalds. Retrieved from New York Times: http://www.centives.net/S/2012/the-secrets-of-mcdonalds/