Creative Project Ideas: How McDonald’s Addressed a Criminally Underrated Offence

October 10th 2022 By Josh Kerr 2 minute read

Let’s start this blog with a simple question… 

You’re sitting at home, craving food, but you don’t fancy venturing to the kitchen to whip something up. You want something quickly and you want something that hits the spot. Where is the first place you think of?

Well, for me, that’s only one place: McDonald’s! 

And one of the reasons that’s the case is because that McDonald’s seed has been planted firmly in my brain by their effective marketing campaigns of the years. I’m not saying I’ve been brainwashed, but that’s not far off…

And one of their latest creative project ideas really hit home in terms of its simplicity to get people talking – it’s absolutely genius. 

So, what exactly did they do? 

Creative Project Ideas: The McDonald’s Campaign

Well to answer that, you must first ask yourself this: have you ever been the victim of ‘fry theft’? 

I’m pretty sure we all have at some point – no matter how good our defensive abilities at the dinner table are.

Let’s face it though, such an offence has become far too accepted in our society to the point it’s not even seen as an offence anymore – more a common hazard of eating fries around family and friends.

But no longer.

Last week McDonald’s launched the world’s first law firm, designed to provide victims with the opportunity to claim back their stolen fries.

Yes, you heard that right. They’re bringing out the legal heavyweights. You can report your account of what happened and make a real difference – one fry at a time. It may seem a bit on the nose, but the campaign was designed by Leo Burnett, based on the ‘insight’ that there has been a 100% increase in people reporting their fries being stolen in the past 12 months on Twitter. The campaign was then cleverly used on Twitter to post social content and raise awareness of how to claim back stolen fries.

Taking inspiration from stereotypical small claims law firms, these ads use the ‘Fries Claims’ corporate branding alongside a lawyer asking: “Are you a victim of fry theft? Justice – and fries – will be served.”

The Wider Reaction to the Campaign

As soon as I opened this, I instantly chuckled. And that’s one of many reasons why it works, because finding something amusing and to be fair, bizarre, means I’m unlikely to forget it any time soon. 

A lot of what looks like ‘random’ playfulness from brands is actually very strategic persuasion on their part. They know what they’re doing. If you ever feel like a campaign didn’t have a ‘point’, you’d do well to delve a little deeper (although, that being said, that doesn’t apply to every campaign!). 

A lot of the “invisible” persuasion used by these enormous brands will suddenly become “visible” when you understand how and why they launch these campaigns in the first place. 

In fact, the majority of effective creative PR ideas stem from a meeting of minds who have snowballed real-life scenarios into fully-fledged campaigns. 

Most importantly, by understanding this, you’ll begin to get ideas for how you can do the same thing for your own brand too.

Want to get some dramatic results for yours? Get in touch and let us come up with some creative project ideas for you!


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