Saturday, September 24, 2011

Amazing Moments in Advertising: McDonalds wants you to REALLY like their double cheeseburgers



Corporations are always looking for ways to relate to their customers through advertisement.  This makes the customer feel as though the brand "understands" them and can subsequently lead to higher sales.  Unfortunately, corporate executives can often times be completely out of touch with the average consumer that buys their product.  Fortunately for us common consumers, this can bring about some inadvertent and hilarious results.

McDonald's is one of the better companies at getting their product recognized through advertisements.  They can often times make food that is very similar or lower quality than other fast food places seem like the best and most economical way to grab a quick bite to eat.  Sometimes, they can even turn disgusting food (like the McRib) into an exciting contest.



Not pictured:  Real meat


Now don't get me wrong--I actually love McDonald's food for the most part.  Their fries are still the best in the business.  Their vanilla ice cream is a wonderful treat (when the ice cream machine is not down) and their sandwiches, while not at Arby's or Hardee's levels, are still pretty decent. 

I am also a big fan of their chicken nuggets, so I was a little bit disturbed when McDonald's came out a short lived ad campaign (that I cannot find anywhere) stating that their nuggets were now made of 100% real chicken meant...which made lose some sleep and that and wonder about a couple of things:

1.)  What the heck were you serving to me before?
2.)  Why would use information like this try and get people into your stores?


                                                                                   filmmusicart
Our next ad campaign?
We don't watch you sleep at night like we used to!


Fortunately, perhaps my favorite ill worded McDonalds ad was screen captured for all eternity by blogger Andrew Teman.  In 2005, Mr. Teman, myself, and many others went to espn.com and were hit with a flash based ad of a young man expressing his desire to have his way with a McDonalds double cheeseburger.  Here are the three slides:




For those of you that are not hip to the lingo used above, urbandictionary.com defines the phrase "I'd hit it" as follows:

I'd Hit it
Vernacular, commonly used by males, meaning, "I would like to have sexual relations with that female."
Example:  "Wow, she's hot! I'd hit it!"

As most of you are aware, this is not an uncommon phrase today, nor was it in 2005.  Despite it's origins as an "urban" slang term, it is well known and used by people across all ages and demographics.  How this got through a board room of executives, commercial editors, and then made into a mass produced ad that basically promoted hot man on sandwich love is beyond absurd.  

You have to think that there was at least one hip/culturally attuned 21 year old and/or a black person that would have said "Wait, that doesn't mean what you think it does."

Either McDonald's needs to get some better people in their ad department, or someone was repressing near uncontrollable levels of laughter as this advertisement was approved and distributed.

                                                                          soxfirst.com
"HA!  You white people are adorably uncool."


What's even more amazing is that unlike the "now using real chicken" ad campaign, this one ran for a few years; until late 2007.  Fortunately, no one took the ad's suggestion to heart (that we know of).  Still, it is amazing that an advertisement like this was able to run for such an extended period of time in this day and age.

I guess just like the joke about Disney that is linked below, corporations really are more disconnected with their audience (especially younger people) than we could have imagined.  As a blogger, however, I can't complain; while it may embarrass them, it gives me some great material to write about.

And speaking of my blog, I hope that all of you will "hit it" again for my next post in a few days.