McDonald's Marketing Strategy & Marketing Mix (4Ps)

Published by MBA Skool Team, Last Updated: August 25, 2021

Marketing Strategy of McDonald's analyses the brand with the marketing mix framework which covers the 4Ps (Product, Price, Place, Promotion). There are several marketing strategies like product innovation, pricing approach, promotion planning etc. These business strategies, based on McDonald's marketing mix, help the brand succeed.

McDonald's marketing strategy helps the brand/company to position itself competitively in the market and achieve its business goals & objectives.

Let us start the McDonald's Marketing Strategy & Mix to understand its product, pricing, advertising & distribution strategies:

McDonald's Product Strategy:

The product strategy and mix in McDonald's marketing strategy can be explained as follows:

McDonald's is one of the world’s leading fast food chains. McDonald's primarily sells hamburgers, chicken products, cheeseburgers, breakfast items, soft drinks, milkshakes and desserts. McDonald's has also included salads, smoothies, fish wraps and fruits. It is widely known for its hamburgers. All these are the product strategy in its marketing mix. The original restaurant, which was started by McDonald's brothers, sold only hot dogs, hamburgers, cheeseburgers, milkshakes and French fries. The other products sold across the world include Big Mac, Big n Tasty, Double Cheese burger, Mc Spicy Burger. In chicken, McDonald's sells Mc Chicken, Premium chicken sandwiches, snack wrap, Chicken Fajita, Chicken Mc Nuggets, Crispy Chicken Deluxe, Grilled chicken deluxe, Artisan grilled chicken. In Fish products such as Fish McBites and Filet O Fish is known. The brand offers a range of breakfast sandwiches that include bagels, biscuits, Hamdesal etc. In beverages, Coca Cola is the primary supplier of McDonald's. It also sells hot chocolates and other juices. It adopts the product as per the local taste preference and cultural identity. McDonald's focuses on glocalization strategy, and includes snacks or food items which are preferred in that particular country or region. To focus on kids, it also packages 'Happy meals' and gives out a toy to attract that segment.


Image: pixabay


McDonald's Price/Pricing Strategy:

Below is the pricing strategy in McDonald's marketing strategy:

McDonald's involves various price bundling strategies that offer bundling products with meals and other products for customers.

To ensure customers buy more products McDonald's focuses on psychological pricing strategies in its marketing mix that appear affordable to customers. They had reduced prices in India by almost 25% so that customers prefer McDonald's as lunch and dining place. Its primary competitors are KFC, Subway, Pizza Hut and Dominos. As part of the promotional pricing strategy, McDonald's offer discounts or bundling on certain products and combination of different menu items as packed together. Their pricing strategy is also adapted to tap the lower middle section of the society. McDonalds’ target customers are mostly young teenagers who wish are brand conscious and want convenience. With the growth of home deliveries, there are various discounts offered on the total billed amount as well.


McDonald's Marketing Strategy comprises of not only its Marketing Mix, but also segmentation, targeting, positoning, competition and analysis like SWOT. Also read McDonald's SWOT Analysis, STP & Competitors

McDonald's Place & Distribution Strategy:

Following is the distribution strategy in the McDonald's marketing mix:

McDonald's restaurants are found in 110+ countries and it operates more than 35,000 restaurants worldwide. The different types of restaurants formats are Mc Drive, Mc Café, Mc Express, McDonald's Next and create your own taste restaurant. Most restaurants allow customers to drive through service with facilities such as indoor and outdoor seating and counter service. Mc Drive locations are near highways that do not offer seating service. Mc Café is a Australian subsidiary creation and it has increased the sales by 60%. As an open concept design, McDonald's Next used digital ordering and offered free mobile charging and table service. It also banned smoking in its restaurants. McDonald's maintains high quality standards and stringent hygiene norms.

With growing ecommerce penetration, the brand has tied-up with several home delivery businesses, which has increased the reach of the brand.


McDonald's Promotion & Advertising Strategy:

The promotional and advertising strategy in the McDonald's marketing strategy is as follows:

McDonald's has spent huge money on advertising campaign, it makes use of newspaper ads, billboards, signage sponsors various sporting events like FIFA world cup, Olympic games, Little league and many more. McDonald's is uses aggressive promotion when it comes to its marketing mix. The TV advertising remains the prime form of advertisement. McDonalds’ TV ads show people engaging in popular activities. They have hardly used any negative campaign against their competitors. In India its burgers do not contain beef and they have divided its kitchen into Vegetarian and Non Vegetarian zones. It wanted to focus on volume sales at a low price. Currently McDonald's uses “I’m Lovin it” branding campaign that was created by Heye and Partner. The brand was official sponsor of 1994 FIFA world cup. Food partner of NBA, official fast food restaurant in Olympics and sponsored other events like IndyCar series, Rolex Sports Car series and NASCAR. The famous celebrity spokespeople of McDonald's include Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, Venus Williams, Jamie McMurray, Justin Timberlake and several other prominent personalities.


Since this is a service marketing brand, here are the other three Ps to make it the 7Ps marketing mix of McDonald's.


People:

McDonald's has a unique way of addressing its customers, and also treats its employees very well. The employees working at the company have a dress code to follow and the company emphasizes on its employees to be customer friendly, cheering and have affection for people. The service delivery of McDonald's is given priority and customer satisfaction is of utmost importance. Employees are given ratings based on their performance and they are encouraged to take a large part in decision-making process. Hygiene is of utmost importance followed by quality and service. Each McDonald's outlet has a restaurant manager who has the responsibility to undertake the daily proceedings. Achieving customer satisfaction is the goal of the company.


Physical Evidence:

McDonald's leaves an everlasting good impression when it comes to physical evidence in its marketing mix. The physical evidence creates a great impact in the minds of the consumer. The attributes of physical evidence displayed are speed of service, quality and hygiene, cleanliness and transparency of processes. Most McDonald's stores display brand colors and is a visible cue of the brand they want to promote the feel that it is a family restaurant. In addition, smoking is banned inside the restaurant with clear-labelled instructions. McDonald's restaurants have a young, vibrant and family feel to all its restaurants worldwide, self service order counters, lively music in the background etc. McDonalds’ physical presence is also enhanced by its recognizable yellow ‘M’ logo, McDonald's Happy Meal toys, burger wrappers, ketchup sachets etc. The website of McDonald's is also very user friendly and has a strong presence.


Process:

McDonald's over the years has improved the cooking methods and process used. It makes use of the sophisticated equipment’s for food processing and new methods for food packaging and distribution. McDonald's has invested in research to improve the processes and has automated several processes. The entire distribution network is streamlined to suit McDonald's Values and culture. The food manufacturing process is visible to customers. Apart from this, McDonald's has excellent processes in quick service in restaurants by having less turn around time, and has a fast home delivery service. It focuses on just-in-time cooking & food preparation, for which they have specially designed kitchens as well. All these conclude the McDonald's marketing strategy & mix.


About McDonald's:

McDonald's was founded in 1940 by Richard and Maurice McDonalds and primarily sells hamburgers, chicken products, cheese burgers, breakfast items, soft drinks, milkshakes and desserts. The restaurant has also included salads, smoothies, fish wraps and fruits. The mode of operation is either franchise based, an affiliate or by the corporation itself. The company is one of the world’s largest private employer. Its primary source of revenue comes from royalties, fees paid by the franchisees and sales from company-oriented restaurants. The McDonald's restaurants are found in 110+ countries and it operates more than 35,000 restaurants worldwide.

The various McDonald's products either are offered as take out or eat in format. The different types of restaurants formats are Mc Drive, Mc Café, Mc Express, Next and create your own taste restaurant.

This article has been researched & authored by the Content & Research Team. It has been reviewed & published by the MBA Skool Team. The content on MBA Skool has been created for educational & academic purpose only.

Browse marketing strategy and 4Ps analysis of more brands similar to McDonald's. The Marketing Strategy & Mix section covers 4Ps and 7Ps of more than 800 brands in 2 categories.

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The names and other brand information used in the Marketing Strategy & Mix section are properties of their respective companies. The companies are not associated with MBA Skool in any way.

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