Eurozone McDonalds Get a Mini-Makeover
August 27th, 2007 6:49 AM Share
This Sunday's New York Times carried an article about McDonald's move upscale within the Eurozone. We're talking minimalist decor, caffè lattes, Internet access and "rental iPods." The changes' champion: Denis Hennequin, the French-born president of McDonald’s Europe. When challenged about the wisdom of aiming Le Big Mac (a.k.a. Mac Royale) at les BCBG (preppies), Hennequin said he "admires strong brands that reinvent themselves to become more fashionable and appealing, as the trendy car line Mini Cooper did." Excusez-moi. The Mini Cooper is not "a car line," it's now MINI, not Mini; and the original Mini was extinct before BMW resurrected (not reinvented) the brand. D'accord?
Published August 27th, 2007 6:34 AM
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They've been doing that here, too, at least where I live in NY. Most McDonald's are starting to look more like Starbucks, offer free wifi, and actually serve Newman's Organic coffees instead of the sheep's pen mulch they used to hock.
If McDonald's actually served real food instead of the foul swill that they call McFood then they wouldn't need all these marketing distractions. Selling a Big Mac by surrounding themselves with cool brand icons will not solve their problem - its like putting a Chrysler Sebring in the Guggenheim in the hope that it will become art.
Rumors have it that quite a few years back, McDonalds hired psychologists to design their interiors. They would be attractive and clean looking to attract people into their restaurants but once you sat in the chairs that didn't quite feel right, or looked around and thought "what am I doing here?" and would eat and leave as soon as you could. I remember the McDonalds next door to my high school had signs on the walls that set a maximum seating time limit of 30 minutes. I can almost see how this parallels the car industry.