Recently, McDonalds Canada won a Webby Award for their interactive campaign, “Our food. Your questions.” The purpose of the interactive campaign was not only to debunk rumors made about the quality of their food, but also to make McDonalds transparent to their consumers. And it was a success – an interactive campaign done right.
McDonald’s Interactive Campaign
They utilized Twitter and Facebook as a channel where people can ask questions about the quality of their food and products. The questions were posted on their website. The campaign was launched in the Spring of 2012 through a YouTube video that directed them to the website. The campaign is a success because McDonalds assessed a problem and used a simple solution. McDonald’s has had a problem with their brand image and negative consumer perceptions, so they came up with a solution – let them ask us questions about our products. They gave a voice to their audience and utilized social media innovatively, ultimately creating a campaign to make one of the smartest investments to their brand image.
Creating an open space for criticism was a bold and risky move for McDonalds. But, by creating this space, McDonalds was able to gain trust from their consumers. Surprisingly, McDonalds answered all the questions, even tough questions like, “Why does your food look different in the advertisement than in the store?” All these questions were answered and displayed on their website. The responses were also very straightforward and unadulterated. For example, with the previous question, McDonald’s responded with a video featuring McDonald’s Canada marketing director and their food stylist, revealing the entire process behind styling the food.
An Innovative Interactive Campaign
Though McDonald’s choice to use Twitter and Facebook as a platform for their campaign is not necessarily innovative, the way they used it, however, differs from the way other companies use social media to track customer responses. The mass outreach and availability of the questions made this campaign stand out. Users can tweet their question or make a Facebook post, allowing McDonalds to be exposed to criticism to a large audience. Readers had an option to follow questions in order to receive a notification if the question was answered. Their goal was to inform as many people as they possibly can. This made the campaign more authentic and not just simply a scheme to manage their reputation.