McDonalds’ TV Ads: We’re For Liars

Posted By Debbie on October 16, 2012

Categories: Marketing

Tags: advertising, mcdonalds

I never understand why companies do this. Why do they run ads where the main characters are liars or bullshit artists? Is that who they think goes to McDonalds?

One recent commercial has a guy on a park bench eating McDonalds. A nice-looking woman sits down next to him, and comments on the art in the park. She seems to know who the artist is (a French name), and asks the guy if he’s into that artist. The commercial points out that you’re cool and smart because you’re eating McDonalds. So the guy acts like he knows the artist when he doesn’t. BS artist and liar.

The guy didn’t have to do that! A cute chick is making conversation with him. She opened it. He could just as well have said, “I’m not familiar with his work, but it sounds like you are. Tell me more.” Not lying! Honest!

Another current commercial has a guy in McDonalds with some friends. The guy looks like he could be 30-ish years old. His friends are asking him where he lives now. The commercial makes it clear that he’s just moved back in with his Mom and will be living in his old bedroom. But the commercial points out that you’re cool and smart because you’re eating McDonalds. So he tells his friends that he got some cool loft space. They’re impressed!

I assume he’ll never be inviting any of these good friends over. And they’re evidently good enough friends to have lunch with at McDonalds but not good enough friends to tell the truth.

I don’t get it. These ads aren’t funny. They won’t go viral. They say NOTHING about the food other than it’s cheap, and the people eating it are bullshit artists. But what can you say about McDonalds’ “food” that you’d want to say in a commercial.

Clearly the best tactic for a McDonalds commercial: do NOT focus on the product AT ALL.