Is McDonald's Part of the Gang 2

Is McDonald’s Part of the Gang?

Image from Brand Champions #FridayAd.

How do you make a brand part of a community and give it a more human and relevant form? You do it by sharing its nickname and, actually, by getting the audience to hear the multiple nicknames given to it by its young customers.

Tone, accent, pronunciation, and even sign language all come together in one of the recent adverts for McDonald’s by Leo Burnett UK as part of the ‘Raise Your Arches’ campaign to show:

  • McDonald’s is where young people want to rush to, hang out, celebrate, get away, and just feel a sense of the familiar.
  • McDonald’s is for everyone, and it is where people come together.
  • McDonald’s is part of the inside gang.

How can all this be done in a one-minute video from a copywriter’s point of you? Read on and you might fancy a McDonald’s by the end of it.

Social Proof

The advert that has managed to do all of the above for this copywriter celebrates young adults by showing how they identify with the brand which brings them together.

The school bell rings and a girl runs out to find her friend riding the bus and just manages to ask where she is going.

A young man stops his car and asks his friends if they want to go with him.

Two friends hear one of their parents fighting and decide to go to where they don’t have to listen to them anymore.

A girl who is clearly romantically interested in a boy who said he has to go do some work, suggests they go and eat together instead – so the feeling will last longer we presume.

A team of girls, a group of boys, and a group of young boys and girls all wait for their friends so they can take off.

All this and more and not once did one of them ask if the others wanted to go to McDonald’s – instead it was ‘Macers,’ ‘McDizzles,’ ‘Mickey D’s’ and even a group of girls who said it in sign language.

The proof is in the social interaction. The proof is in how young adults in the UK are so comfortable with the brand they grew up with that they make it their own.

Dare I say it, they make it part of their group of friends.

It’s All In A Name

I was given the nickname Mariga when I was in college. Even now my college friends call me by it and if they don’t, I know something is wrong.

If a nickname is given to someone – or a brand in this case – out of love or just playfulness, then the person or brand attached to it becomes a special part of the group. Anyone can call you by the name you were given by your parents, but it takes creativity, a connection, and an understanding of how a name can fit a personality to come up with a nickname.

McDonald’s would smell of the same signature aroma by any name, but giving its nicknames the space to be voiced shows us how personal it is to the demographic in the advertisement.

Inclusive Marketing

When you feel a brand includes every kind of person, even if the person they are pinpointing with the specific advert is not you, then you will most likely feel closer to it. I know I did. The part with the girls using sign language got me.

The chatter disappeared, the music became slower and we could zoom in on the hands doing the talking. Truth is, until this point I was just watching. I got the point, I heard the different nicknames, and because it was fast-paced and full of music and talking my mind went along with it. It was when the sound and everything slowed down that my heart was able to step in.

Is this branding at its best?

For me, the writer, yes. It got me to feel when I wasn’t really expecting it.

It is all about the feels. It is all about creating that moment of human interaction. It is all about telling a story that moves along and moves its audience.

Disclaimer: Any references to companies, brands, products or services are used by the author to showcase her own opinion and writing skills. Brand stories and business writing are used to provide insight into marketing strategies, branding, and any other techniques used by companies in the market today in order to provide a view to the marketing world as the author sees it.

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