Analysis of McDonald’s Corporation Advertising
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Advertising appeals to consumers through common images; the logo used is well-designed and there is a clear separation of art from commerce. Advertisers use these iconic images to appeal to consumers since they symbolize or stand directly for something. The image for MacDonald’s symbolizes its non-conventionality. Hence advertisers use these images to communicate much more than words, since they seem to convey the message without too much effort. According to McDonald’s website, their mission statement is “to be our customers' favorite place and way to eat. Our worldwide operations have been aligned around a global strategy called the Plan to win centering on the five basics of an exceptional customer experience – People, Products, Place, Price and Promotion. We are committed to improving our operations and enhancing our customers' experience. (http://www.aboutmcdonalds.com/mcd)
For decades, Macdonald’s has maintained a broad advertising campaign. In addition to the media, the company makes considerable use of signage and billboards, sporting events and coolers of drinks with their logo for all kinds of events. The company has used twenty-three diverse slogans in United States for advertising. At the same time the company has few other slogans for the selected countries and regions.
In the case of McDonald’s advertising the texts used are effective. They have contributed in attracting targeted clients to the company. The wordings are aesthetically pleasing and successful at getting the consumers to buy the product. The phrase ‘I’m Lovin’ it’ which is used in one the advertisements, indicates a piece of advertising that is particularly striking. According to Cross “propagandas is simply a means of persuasion”, which they have applied that to their place because it is evidently an artistic expression, yet is trying to sell something to the consumers.(Cross,149) The company has had to face are numerous. The company has been involved in quite a number of lawsuits, most of which entail trademark disputes. MacDonald’s has threatened many food production industries with legal action unless the companies drop their trading name.
For instance, MacDonald’s once sued a Scottish café owner by the name MacDonald, even though the production in question dated back over a century.
McDonald’s has also filed various defamation suits. For example two activists were sued for distributing pamphlets attacking its labor and health records. Some allegations were untrue, causing massive public relations disaster. On the other hand, the judge also discovered that half of the information was truthful. The company has been fined for illegally employing and using child labor in one of its restaurants.
The company’s rhetoric is truthful since the business brings in new customers and creates new products. The company released a burger that is low fat, and which targeted adults in response to the consumers’ desire for healthier options. The company has learned from its previous mistakes, like going after the wrong target market of adults instead of young adults. This however, resulted to a turn around strategy, which later led to increase in sale and profits.
McDonald’s has managed to implement strategies that satisfy the changing need of the customer. The company, being an international restaurant within the quick service restaurant, t requires a very high level of promotional campaigns to remain competitive. This has been so, since some of the most memorable commercials in fast food industry have emerged from this particular company.
The rhetoric has contributed to its world-wide expansion and in its listing on the public stock markets. With the expansion of McDonald’s to a worldwide market, the company has become a symbol of globalization. At the same time, it has acted as the spread of the American system of living. Its prominence has also resulted to regular topics of public debates on obesity, business ethics and consumer responsibility.
The company also introduced a café style in accompaniment to the restaurant. To accommodate the recent trend of high quality coffee and recognition of coffee shops in general. A number of locations are connected to convenience stores and gas stations, while others are situated in Wal- Mart stores. This level of achievement is an indication of effective advertising or else truthful rhetoric.
The corporation also earns revenue as an investor in properties, as an operator and franchiser of restaurants. The company’s business model is slightly different from other fast- food chains. In addition, franchising fees and marketing fees are calculated as a proportion of sales.
According to Schlosser close to one in eight workers in the United States, have been employed by McDonald’s at some point. McDonald’s is the largest private operators of play grounds in the United States, at the same time being the leading purchaser of beef, pork, apples and potatoes. (Schlosser, 42) The selection of meats that the company uses varies with the culture of the hosting country.
Many researchers, including some writers believe there is a connection between advertisement and harmful behaviors. Some suggest that advertisements affect children negatively especially young women. Lutz argues that the manner in which advertisers modify the meaning of words is able to have a harmful effect on languages and how it is used. The author believes that the relationship amid humans and any form of culture can be complicated. (Lutz, 446) However there is no denial that there is a relationship between behavior and advertising. On the other hand, it is not convincing on the directness and similarity about the relationship between media and advertising.
Lutz continues to argue that advertisers use language to imply a great thing about products and services without promising anything at all. With extensive skill, advertisers can create an advertisement that makes us to believe that a particular product is better than it is without having to lie about it. (Lutz, 448)
According to Machesney, adverting must build a brand while speaking with one voice. They develop economies in the creative process, while maximizing its local effectiveness and it increases the company’s speed of implementation. It is the key to determining success of the organization. The ability to identify the key of an ad that contributes to its success leads to maximization of the economy of scale. (Machesney, 265)
Critics argue that commercialization of all fields of society, increases in consumption and wastes resources; privatization of public space and the negative influence on the lifestyle is due to overrated advertising. Advertising to some extent has contributed tremendously to destroying non-material possessions.
Public service adverting is an adverting technique used in promoting goods and services. It is crucial in forming, educating and motivating the public about non commercial issues like conserving energy, deforestation and political ideology.
It is an influential and educational tool that is capable of motivating and reaching larger audiences. Adverting justifies its existence when used in the public interest. It is too much a powerful tool to be used for commercial purposes only.
Infomercials are televisions commercials with a longer format; they are very useful in creating an impulse purchase, so that the moment the consumer observes the presentation, it is followed by immediate purchase of the product through the advertised toll free number. Infomercials describe, display and frequently demonstrate products and their features. They commonly have testimonials from industry professionals and consumers.
According to Williamson, press advertising is an influential means of advertising. It describes advertising in printed medium such as newspapers, journals or magazines. This involves everything from media with a broad readership base. It allows private companies or individuals to purchase a small targeted advertisement at a low fee to advertise their products and services. (Williamson, 255)
Celebrity branding is another powerful form of advertising that mainly focuses on using a celebrity popularity to gain recognition for the product. Celebrities are frequently involved in advertising campaigns like televisions or print adverts to advertise general or specific program. This can lead to great success if it is endorsed by various companies, and practiced prudently.
Online advertising is the most recent and productive form of advertising. It reaches a massive audience at the same time being affordable, as compared to other mediums. This is achieved by the use of World Wide Web to express the purpose of delivering marketing messages to draw customers.