Loaded - McDonald's Fries

OBJECTIVE

For more than 40 years, McDonald’s has been known and loved for their core menu. It includes legendary items such as the Big Mac, fries and the Cheeseburger, all of which have become part of popular culture. So when McDonald’s decided to launch a new twist on one of these classic menu items - for the first time in its history - it was going to be a big deal! 

Our task was to help launch Loaded Fries into the Australian market, a new take on the iconic McDonald’s Fries. They combined the classic fries with two delicious toppings - guacamole and salsa, as well as bacon and cheese sauce variant. 

We needed to talk to 18-35 years olds - loyal McDonald’s customers who love the brand, but also frequent a range of informal eating out restaurants. 

And we needed to launch the product in the middle of the Australian summer, the most cluttered time of year, where we were competing with sports, sales and cinematic releases.

The business objectives included:

Awareness of Loaded Fries of 40%
Trial of Loaded Fries of 10%


CREATIVE IDEA

McDonald’s new summer product, Loaded Fries, allowed consumers to customise their fries with a range of toppings, bringing a McDonald’s classic to life. To promote their release, we decided to bring the fries to life in our own way, making them the star of their own summer blockbuster, Loaded: The Movie. The movie was presented on Facebook over 5 episodes, using the McDonald’s Australia Facebook community to shape the story.

At the end of each episode, viewers were presented with a decision point, challenging them to use their creativity to direct the next episode. Suggestions left in the comments under each video were moderated, with the best chosen for a “shortlist” which were replied to with a customised movie storyboard frame, bringing their idea to life as a consideration to go into the final film. These were posted as a reply to their suggestion comment within a few hours of the comment itself.

The best entries were written into the script, edited and released in the next episode. The chosen suggestors were credited as “Guest Writers and Directors”, with their name and profile picture featured in the credit reel.

The 5 episodes were edited together into the final 8 minute film, which was released on Boxing Day, which is commonly when many summer blockbuster hits have their general release at the cinema.

The film then played live at Tropfest, the World’s biggest short film festival, putting our contributors names up in lights to a crowd of 90,000 film fans, and A-list judges including Mel Gibson and Simon Baker.


RESULTS

The campaign drove strong results with 3,479,141 Facebook fans contributing to the film, which helped drive an Earned Reach of 5.2M. 

The final film was also screened at Tropfest, the biggest short film festival in the world, to drive awareness even further.

The success of the campaign lead to it being rolled out beyond Australia - with New Zealand jumping onboard first.

Thanks to Loaded, December was one of the busiest months on record - based on sales and guest count in restaurants.

In relation to the objectives:

Awareness of Loaded Fries reached 79% by week 3 (double the 40% projection)

Trial reached 20% (double the campaign target of 10%)

December was the busiest month on record based on sales and guest count in restaurants

Key results

3,479,141 Facebook fans contributed to the film

6.4M Paid Reach

5.2M Earned Reach

Awareness of Loaded Fries reached 79% by week 3 (double the 40% projection)

Trial reached 20% (double the campaign target of 10%)

As a result, December was one of the busiest months on record - based on sales and guest count in restaurants

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