McDonald’s Global CMO Promoted as Brand Outlines 'Creative Excellence' Marketing Growth Plan

The fast-food chain has outlined how it aims to 'stay ahead' of customer demand

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Global restaurant chain McDonald’s has outlined its plans for growth, which includes the ambition to elevate its marketing “through creative excellence,” while its global chief marketing officer Morgan Flatley has been promoted in tandem.

The world’s largest fast-food company’s marketing has been overseen by Flatley since her promotion to global chief marketing officer in November 2021. During that time, the brand has continued to regularly release local “culturally relevant campaigns” to maintain its standing with consumers around the world.

Flatley has now been elevated to evp, global chief marketing officer and new business ventures, which will see her scope grow to include leading new business ventures and opportunities that extend the reach of the McDonald’s brand.

Strategy to drive (thru) growth

The newly released plan, posted on the corporate website, outlines key focuses for growth to help McDonald’s “stay ahead” of customer demand: Maximize marketing, commit to the core offerings and double down on the four Ds—delivery, digital, drive thru and development.

In explaining how it aims to elevate its marketing “creative excellence,” the statement cited the “Famous Orders” campaign created by W+K in 2020 as one example of a campaign that drove growth for the entire brand.

“We will continue leaning into that strategy and scale platforms across markets to find new ways to tap into the zeitgeist and have fun with our customers,” outlined the message. The company also revealed an update of its strategic plan originally released in 2020.

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The updated version of McDonald’s Accelerating the Arches growth strategyMcDonald’s

The second element of the strategy said that the brand would look to find “new ways to bring our core menu to life” which would include improving classic items while “stepping up our game on the menu items that built our heritage to deliver hotter, juicier, more delicious burgers to our customers across the globe.”

Following the introduction of new popular menu items such as the McCrispy Chicken Sandwich, chicken is expected to be a growth driver that McDonald’s will look to for its global market share expansion.

The third focus would be to continue to grow its digital, delivery and drive thru services having introduced the McDelivery service, its mobile app and restaurant kiosks. In the U.S. alone, the digital business has engaged with over 25 million active customers using its McDonald’s Rewards, the company claimed. That loyalty program now runs in over 50 markets.

Marketing has been an important growth driver for us. Our creative excellence is making our brand not just more recognizable, but more relevant to our fans.

Chris Kempczinski, president and CEO of McDonald’s

“We’re creating an even more personalized and convenient experience when our customers order digitally, enabling us to serve up relevant offers, make them feel more connected to McDonald’s and increase visits and engagement.”

Speaking about the loyalty program during the third quarter results for the company in October last year, president and CEO Chris Kempczinski stated: “Each reward a customer redeems and each preference of customer shares on our app helps power our personal touch. We are using this deeper understanding of our customers to create relevant content and offers through the channels they prefer. By tailoring messages, our customers feel more connected to McDonald’s, ultimately driving engagement and increasing frequency.”

Kempczinski also described digital as “a primary driver” to improve customer experience and added that the loyalty program would help to “reconnect” with lay customers as well.

“Marketing has been an important growth driver for us. Our creative excellence is making our brand not just more recognizable, but more relevant to our fans. I can confidently say that the McDonald’s marketing team is truly firing on all cylinders,” he added.

As it faces an increase in demand, McDonald’s also intends to accelerate the pace of restaurant openings and innovation as the fourth element. This has even included the opening of new locations in Ukraine despite the ongoing Russian invasion. Meanwhile, a new restaurant in Fort Worth, Texas has opened to include an “Order Ahead Lane”—a separate drive thru lane where customers receive their orders via a food and beverage conveyor.

The final strategic element will see the business “modernize” its working processes through “Accelerating the Organization,” an initiative that will aim to solve customer and people problems while scaling innovations at speed.

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