McDonald's says 'Good Morning'

By Surina Sayal , afaqs!, Mumbai | In OOH News | October 04, 2010
The fast food chain that launched its breakfast menu a few months ago is now promoting it via an extensive outdoor billboard campaign

Quick service restaurant (QSR) McDonald's India has launched a new meal category, the breakfast menu. This is aimed to make mornings easier for people on the move, especially working people.

While the McDonald's breakfast menu is very popular internationally and has even had award winning outdoor innovations done around it, it has taken the chain more than 12 years to start serving the menu in India.

Rameet Arora, senior director, marketing, McDonald's India (West and South) explains to afaqs!, "The launch of the breakfast menu reflects our keen understanding and appreciation of a new consumer reality. Nuclear families, job mobility, homes away from home and more travel time - all mean that there is a consumer need that has emerged now. We are responding to that need."

While the breakfast menu, served between 7am and11am, has been rolled out in Mumbai and Delhi over the past six months after being test marketed for some time, the QSR chain also launched an extensive billboard campaign on October 1 to promote the new menu and has taken up approximately 45-50 hoardings in Mumbai.

Research conducted by McDonald's had consumers share what they wanted from their breakfast servings every morning. The research showed that many working people grab sandwiches, vada pavs, coffee, tea and more at locations such as roadside stalls, around colleges and workplaces and railway stations. Thus, the typical working professional's mornings are tough and hasty - people get up, there's running around to get things done and then people scampering to get to work - and on the way, grabbing a bite to eat.

Arora shares that research in Mumbai showed that at least 60 per cent of the working population has breakfast on the move at least once a week. "This reflects a new lifestyle that has emerged. It is a new cosmopolitan society, where young people are working away from home and travelling across the city to get to their workplace."

This is where McDonald's comes in with the aim to serve customers tasty and convenient breakfast. "Except for the hash browns, all the other breakfast is grilled - so we're serving healthy, fresh breakfast options," says Arora.

This new breakfast menu offers choices such as the Egg Muffin, Hash Browns, Salad Sandwich, Sausage Muffin and Veg McMuffin, among other items. The offering starts at Rs 20 and goes up to Rs 72.

The campaign stemmed from the research insights and the creatives show breakfast items such as a hot cup of coffee and a muffin or pancakes, with an antonymic play on words like 'Rise - Shine', 'Wake up - Get up', 'Grumpy - Chirpy', 'Skip work - Skip to work', and 'Morning - Good morning'. The copy also reads 'Good morning. Great breakfast'. About a dozen such creatives have been worked out by Leo Burnett, the creative agency on the account, while the outdoor has been handled by Milestone Brandcom.

Going further, the breakfast menu and the campaign will be taken to 30 other markets in the country within a year. When quizzed about how people will take to the breakfast menu in smaller towns, where people are used to having breakfast at home - unlike the metros, Arora justifies, "Lifestyles and aspirations are converging in the country. Be it metros or mini-metros, people are travelling all over, working in different towns and smaller towns. Companies are expanding their spread across the nation in many smaller towns and with them, people, too, are moving."

He adds, "Young people across the country, wherever they may be, do not lack orientation now. All aspirations converge around the Internet and television. A 26 year old executive in Kolhapur knows about McDonald's as much as his counterpart does in a city like Mumbai or Delhi."

The chain is also giving away merchandise while promoting this menu. For example, a patron buying food worth more than Rs 150 gets a free coffee mug. Arora shares that the outdoor campaign has met with a good response, claiming that while the campaign was launched in Mumbai at about 7 am on October 1, the outlets that had stocked a few thousand of these mugs had run out of these by 8:30 am.

Following the outdoor campaign, McDonald's also plans to launch a digital campaign for its breakfast menu.

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