McDonald’s has turned on the charm for a complete brand transformation—a journey that is about thoughtfully changing the conversation and changing relationships, instead of a complete overhaul. It’s getting back to basics in an effort to better serve its customers and become the “modern, progressive burger company” that its new CEO, Steve Easterbrook, envisions—including a reorganization of the company to accelerate consumer-driven actions.
Familiar in the U.S., McDonald’s is reigniting its decade-old tagline, “I’m lovin’ it,” which continues to resonate, as it associates the experience of eating McDonald’s with familiar, positive, and rewarding emotions. This new brand transformation can be seen everywhere—from its social media megahit during the Super Bowl to the largest single-day activation in the brand’s history: “imlovinit24: 24 gifts of joy. In 24 cities. Over 24 hours. #imlovinit.”
The company opened up a line of dialogue by expanding its “Our food. Your questions.” initiative, a social media campaign that aims to answer all customer questions transparently. U.S. CMO Deborah Wahl is telling customers, “We hear you”—and pivoting the brand’s mantra from “billions served” to “billions heard,” making sure that the company always keeps its customers at the center of everything it does.
Dealing with a much more health-conscious generation, McDonald’s has elevated its efforts to find a way of making healthy food affordable—and affordable food healthy. Several efforts made by the company included adding fresh fruit and yogurt in Happy Meals and testing a kale breakfast bowl at select Southern California locations. In this age of personal preference and desires for customization, McDonald’s has also been testing its “Create Your Taste” concept around the world, which allows hungry patrons to build their own meals from a series of options. Additionally, McDonald’s has started to streamline menu offerings and highlight classics like the Big Mac in order to reduce clutter, fuel simplicity, and keep its service fast—and continue to live up to its promise to listen.