2017 Winners

Is It Still A Big Mac?

McDonald's Restaurants of Canada Limited

Gold Agency of the Year: Cossette

The Challenge

With stagnant traffic and declining sales on their most iconic product, the Big Mac, McDonald’s needed to protect its core business by generating interest among consumers with a new twist on a classic.

Faced with a target who valued constant change and placed little importance on brand loyalty, the Big Mac’s existing equity needed to be harnessed, while still driving appeal with this new variation. The addition of bacon enhanced the flavour profile and it was the first time the sandwich had changed in its 50 years in Canada. Agency Cossette was tasked with generating excitement and intrigue among an apathetic target who were faced with a plethora of food selections.

The Insight

With more than 73 million sold every year in Canada, the Big Mac has a unique taste that appeals to many and has never been altered in Canada. It is a cultural icon with a one-of-a-kind taste and an ingredient list known to most – there’s even a song about it. As the Big Mac didn’t need an introduction, we decided to focus on the change – the bacon. While delicious, bacon is not part of the original Big Mac recipe, which posed a very simple and important question: is it still a Big Mac?

The Plan

Through strong collaboration with the media company, OMD, the team was able to provide a media wish list, which resulted in a strong and extensive 360 campaign. As the Big Mac was a product known to most, they were able to bypass the typical requirements for new products and jump right into the campaign idea that questioned the validity of this new Big Mac. Slews of existential questions supported this idea and were posed to consumers to drive this query while making them rethink their stance (e.g. is a tricycle still a bicycle?).

The brand launched with a one-minute online video, along with 15 and 30-second TVCs, that featured two friends arguing about whether a Big Mac with bacon is still a Big Mac. This launch was supported by a YouTube masthead that posed an important question (are pants cuffed above the knee still pants?) and prompted users to vote on whether the Big Mac Bacon was true to its name. The team used every platform within their buy to question this new product and fuel the debate by posing thought-provoking questions to encourage users to voice their opinions. All platforms drove consumers to cast their votes on a vanity URL hosted on the McDonald’s website.

The Results

-700 million impressions
-YouTube masthead broke an engagement record with 32 million interactions in one day
-More than 330,000 votes tallied
-Social mentions increased by 188% in the first two days of the campaign
-More than 37% Big Mac Bacon sales than forecasted
-More than 14% Big Mac sales than forecasted
-The campaign generated a noticeable brand lift in terms of likelihood to visit McDonald’s (14% increase)
-TV ads generated the highest recognition (47%) and along with social media generated the strongest brand list among all channels (14% increase)