Saturday, February 28, 2009

If It Ain't Beef...?

While indulging myself in a recent Fillet-o-Fish craving, I noticed something peculiar printed on my McDonald's bag. Forgive the misquote, but it proclaimed something along the lines that their burgers are made with 100% beef.

It got me to thinking.

I won't get into my train of thought on this one. Seriously, I think you can follow it without me leading you down that path.

The thing is, as I shoved the fries (clearly placed on the top of the bag for convenience) into my mouth while stopped at a red light, I got to thinking about the brilliance of marketing. Sometimes... okay, most times - I wonder if I give them too much credit, those marketeers - but just then, I read something about how changing the color of a Sprite can by a Pantone shade or two can make people think it tastes different.

I fear them. The marketing overlords.

The McDonald's thing for example, I picture them - sitting around a grossly large table, on the umpteenth floor of - well, in my mind's eye, it's the tallest McDonald's ever. They're plotting. Peering over tented fingers. Saying things to each other about one-hundred percent beef.

"Just a vague 9 point tag line on the bags." They say.
"It'll make them wonder." They grin.
"Exactly what... what am I eating elsewhere".

And my brain switches to overhead cam where they look up and laugh directly into my face.

Of course, by the time the light turns green and my greasy fingers are back on the steering wheel, I'm sure I've overestimated the powers-that-be. Surely, someone just innocently said, "Hey, our burgers are tasty, nutritious, and delicious, and it's because they're made of cow. Let's let folks know!" I'm further convinced, it was the suggestion of a smiling employee as depicted on those paper tray liners because I realize McDonald's listens to and values the opinions of all Team Members.

I'm sure that's the case.


Sooze said...


Yeah. I didn't need a road to follow your thoughts on beef.
I try not to think of those things.

Yes, marketing. It can be evil.

Isn't your hubster like a marketing genius?
Didn't he just win an award for said genius from all the other marketing geniuses?

Things that make you go Hmmmm....

Masada said...

Back in the day I recall hearing a rumor that there was a brand of beef made for McDonald's called "100% Beef", but this was just a brand name. The actual product was a combination of protiens including soy protien. The old story goes they had to change this because it was misleading. However, today they are using cow and only cow as the beef portion of their burgers and they are very unequavical on this point.

Of course, a McD's gut bomb slider is an unhealthy for you as it has ever been. A typical Big Mac, fries and a coke contain the calorie and fat requirements for 200 pound male labourer for 2 days. This is devastating to a 130 pound female that doesn't get out a lot. And no... getting a Diet Coke doesn't make it healthier.

What marketing is really for is to take aspects of your product that are glaringly unsellable and try to come up with ways to make them appear valuable--the quintessencial "win-win". Never listen to marketing... especially when it is trying to sell you something.

jaime said...

My vote? Competition. As if the fries aren't addictive enough, they want to make sure people are buying their value meals, not just hte fries and then driving over to BK for a flame grilled Whopper.

*firm nods*



Chops said...

You should be a sketch artist for test commercials. We need another storyboard conceptualist here!

And yes, 'marketeers' as you refer to them, ARE evil. Not to be confused with mouseketeers- which are also evil.