McDonald's combines social with cultural tastes in China

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McDonald’s combined a fried chicken giveaway with social media to get 1 million pledges
McDonald’s combined a fried chicken giveaway with social media to get 1 million pledges

The Data: McDonald's research and testing indicated that although it did not have brand recognition when it came to chicken wings in China, consumers preferred the taste of its wings to others.

The Offer: McDonald's worked with Tribal DDB to build awareness by allowing consumers to redeem any competitor's coupon for discounted McDonald's chicken wings. From February until April of this year, consumers that publicly announced their love for McWings on a branded fan site were treated to free wings for seven days at locations around the country.

The Channel: Tribal DDB opted to market McWings with a combination of online and offline programs. It housed display ads and five viral videos on a fan site of the Chinese social media and messaging platform QQ. After reaching 1 million fans, McDonald's developed seven McWings-themed restaurants in seven cities for seven days across China, promoting the offer through QQ and word-of-mouth.

The Creative: In addition to the fan site, images that prominently featured a plate of chicken wings and online videos highlighted the coupon exchange. The effort took just two weeks to reach 1 million chicken wing lovers.

The Verdict: The creative in this campaign is very straightforward, but you can't argue with a successful outcome. McDonalds wanted a pledge for McWings, and it eventually got 2.1 million of them. This proved a really strong promotional idea that engages potential consumers at multiple levels — from the Web to the stores.

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