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Founded 1940
Founder Dic McDonald, Mac McDonald and Ray Kroc
Headquarters Oak Brook, IL
Main Product(s) Food/Hamburger
Slogan "I'm Lovin It"




In 1940, Brothers Dic and Mac McDonald, open McDonald's Bar-B-Que in San Bernardino, California. However, the first McDonald's, as it is known today, is founded after the two brothers made alterations, which turned it into a drive-through, to their previous restaurant. Ray Kroc, after visiting the San Bernardino McDonald's, opens his own McDonald's in Des Plaines, Illinois in 1954. Kroc's McDonald's was the first to feature the now famous red and white color scheme and the golden arches.[1]


The Golden Arches

The Golden Arches are the McDonald's logo that everyone recognizes today, However, the Arches were not the logo that was emphasized during the early years of the company. Early on, McDonald's were recognized by there gaudy red and white tiled roofs. In 1969, McDonald's decided to redesign the restaurants replacing the white and red roofs and place more emphasis on the now famous Golden Arches.

Ronald McDonald


First introduced in a 1966 television commercial, Ronald McDonald is the clown mascot for McDonald's. Ronald McDonald and his friends are very popular among kids and he is seen interacting with children a lot in commercials featuring him. During the 1960's, when Ronald McDonald was first introduced to replace Speedee, the previous mascot, McDonald's was trying to look for a more family oriented setting. Ronald McDonald helped with this by appealing to children and making McDonald's a more family friendly enviorment.



The original mascot used by McDonald's before Ronald McDonald. Speedee was mainly incorporated into the older McDonald's logos before the logo was changed to the Golden Arches. Speedee was later replaced by Ronald McDonald as the mascot in order to make McDonald's restaurants seem more family friendly. [1]

Major Slogans

These are major campaign slogans that have been used by McDonald's

1960: All American Menu- A hamburger, fries, and a shake." This was the first official slogan used by the McDonald's franchise.

1971(reused 1981): You deserve a break today." In 1999, Advertising Age gave this slogans ad campaign fifth on its list of top 100 ad campaigns of the 20th century.

1974(still used today): "Twoallbeefpattiesspecialsaucelettucecheesepicklesonionsonasesameseedbun" A highly popular advertising jingle for McDonald's Big Mac burger.

1984: "It's a good time for the great taste of McDonald's."

1995: "Have you had your break today?"

1997: "Did somebody say McDonald's?"

2003: "i'm lovin' it" First global add campaign.[1]


Ray Kroc created the basis for McDonald's advertising as being both aggressive in marketing and also flexible in response to consumer demand. McDonald's must advertise not only to a domestic market but also a global market as well. Though McDonald's has advertised to most age groups, the brand's focus mainly remains with the middle age-adult, which can mainly be seen by advertising slogans such as "You deserve a break today" and "Have you had your break today?"

Adevertisment Campaigns

In the 1950's and 1960's most McDonald's advertising was done locally by McDonald's franchisees, however, there was some national agreement among McDonald's restaurants about what should be addressed in local advertising. By the 1970's McDonald's corporation decided to adopt a advertising campaign that was on a national level, the first advertisement being the "Have you had your break today?" campaign, which attempted to show that McDonald's was a place everyone could enjoy.[2]

Big Mac Campaign

In 1976, McDonald's wanted a shift in advertising from showing their restaurants as fun places to eat but show more of the products that the company made. The company began this advertising shift by beginning the Big Mac Campaign, as a national advertisement. The Big Mac was McDonald's most recognized burger products and the campaign's target audience was adults instead of children. One of the main ways the Big Mac was advertised was through a catchy jingle in which the ingredients of the Big Mac where stated, "Twoallbeefpattiesspecialsaucelettucecheesepicklesonionsonasesameseedbun." Though the Big Mac campaign had limited national success, franchisees had great success using the campaign on a local level and when the Big Mac campaign reappeared in 1995 the campaign saw a lot more national success. However, in 1976, the Big Mac campaign helped McDonald's stay ahead of newly emerging fast food restaurants.

Product Range

The product range for McDonald's is highly varied and based on the countries and/or regions that the McDonald's restaurants are located. Menu items vary based on the particulars restaurants location in the world, however, domestic products in the United States include:

Big Mac, Big N' Tasty, hamburger, cheeseburger, McChicken, McChicken nuggets, snack wraps, premium salads, fries.

Breakfast products include: McMuffins, biscuits, coffee, sausage burritos, chicken and steak McSkillets.

McDonald's is supplied drinks by the Coca Cola Company some establishments can have regionally produce drink products. Most McDonald's also have milkshakes that can be ordered.[3]


Consumers for McDonald's range mainly from younger children to middle-aged adults. Consumers also include people from both the United States and a world wide market given McDonald's global market.[4]

Markets and Place in the Industry

McDonald's, since its founding, has been the leading fast food restaurant chain both in the United States and worldwide market. McDonald's is easily one of the most recognized brands in the world.[2]



McDonald's has always had problems dealing with claims that their products are not nutritional in any way and are shown to lead to obesity, especially in children. Though McDonald's denies these claims, court cases sometimes come up in which people claim that their obesity is a direct result of eating at McDonald's, however; most of these cases are dismissed. [5]

In 2003, a group of New York teens sued McDonald's, claiming that obesity resulted from eating at McDonald's. The lawyers for the teens claimed that McDonald's was committing fraud by not informing the teenagers, who ate at the McDonald's almost daily, of the nutritional value of the food and claiming that the food was nutritional. McDonald's was able to prove that they have been showing the nutritional values of their food for a few decades and reasoned with the judge that the teens made their own decisions to eat there. The judge agreed and dismissed the case. [6]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2
  2. 2.0 2.1 The Advertising Age Encyclopedia of Advertising
  4. Encyclopedia of Consumer Brands
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