13 June 2024

McDonald’s Scent-Based Ad Campaign Causes McFlurry of Interest

Daily News
| The European |

An advertising campaign by McDonald’s caused a Mcflurry of interest in the Dutch cities of Utrecht and Leiden

The fast-food chain added the “distinct aroma” of its French fries to billboards in a bid to “target the noses” of passers-by and entice them into its restaurants.

According to the brand, pedestrians could smell the “McDonald’s scent” from up to five metres away.

The yellow and red billboards were placed 200 metres away from McDonald’s outlets and diffused the “iconic smell” to evoke “clear and emotional memories”.

Its experiment seemed to have worked.

In a statement, it said: “For decades, McDonald’s has seduced taste buds around the globe, making it one of the most beloved and recognizable brands out there. But the brand realized that there’s something just as memorable for consumers as their golden arches, products, or jingle: their smell.

“McDonald’s Netherlands put this to the test. A series of plain yellow and red billboards were placed in Utrecht and Leiden.

“The prints appear to be empty at first glance, but as passers-by approach within 5 meters, they are greeted with the distinct aroma of McDonald’s French Fries, coming from inside the billboard.

“This is the first time that a billboard has been used to diffuse the McDonald’s scent, making the recognizable smell its most important brand asset.”

Stijn Mentrop-Huliselan, McDonald’s Netherlands CMO, added: “McDonald’s is all about Good Times. We are well known for our distinctive brand assets that they are mostly visual. Smell has been proven to be more effective at sparking clear and emotional memories than images. With the inclusion of this next sense in our advertising, we found a new way to remind people of Good Times at McDonald’s.”

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