McDonald’s Corporation is probably the most powerful fast food chain in the world, so obviously they’re doing something right. Let’s dissect this giant’s current moves.

For those who have been exposed to McDonald’s recent commercials, they’re pushing for Mini Meals, which are essentially Happy Meals in disguise (minus the toy). The first question is why. The second question is how they are fending off competitors.

Mini Meals And Why

Fast food chains always boast about more food for less money (speed is granted). Selling less food for equal money sounds like shooting oneself on the foot. Actually, they’re rebranding without really making forceful attempts at proving that point.

With overwhelming obesity problems (even in children), people are becoming more health conscious. Even First Lady Michelle Obama is on the fight against childhood obesity. Therefore, it was actually strategic for McDonald’s to take this position.

McDonald’s Mini Meals sound like “appropriately portioned meals.”

mcdonalds mini meals

[While at McDonald’s “doing research” hehe]

Me: Excuse me, this may sound like an odd question, but how are the sales of this new “mini meal” deal?
Manager: It’s actually been great!
Me: Wow! That’s fantastic! Why do you think it’s doing so well?
Manager: Well, this is my guess – people might have always felt heavy after a full SUPER SIZE ME combo, so this is something lighter and healthier.
Me: Interesting. Thanks dude!

Do you think Applebee’s Under 550 Calories Menu was a coincidence? I highly doubt that.

applebees 550 calorie menu

While other fast food chains are still in the SUPER SIZE ME mode, McDonald’s is taking a different position and being more health conscious. It’ll only be a matter of time before the others catch up. All in all, be watchful of trends.

Superior Positioning

I once talked about Grace Ormonde‘s position in the industry as being the premier luxury brand who compares herself to no one. That is her hill; and she is the king/queen of it.

McDonald’s is the king of the fast food hill. Therefore, the only other entity they will compare to is the next bigger hill that is for them to claim.

For those who live in California, we are fortunate and unfortunate enough to have virtually every fast food chain you can think of. So what will places like Burger King and Carl’s Jr do? Take stabs at the king because it’s easier to compare themselves to someone better. And it’s pretty easy with commodity products. Example: real Tylenol vs. generic Tylenol.

And if you observe closely to McDonald’s commercials, they’re always with positive alignments such as Lebron James and Dwight Howard or the Winter Olympics.

If you’re a capable marketer

You can adeptly apply the concepts of what some companies spend millions on marketing in your own business. I won’t actually tell you how you should position your business because that would just take the fun away. However, I will continue to lay the pieces out.

So I talked about two things:

  1. Following trends
  2. Superior positioning


  1. What do you think the trends are for our industry?
  2. What position do you take in this industry?

Happy marketing,

Lawrence Chan

P.S. I took that picture of McDonald’s Mini Meal…and ate it. I feel bad now. At least I didn’t super size.

P.P.S. Secret: Grace Ormonde is hosting some snazzy black-tie A-List VIP parties in 20 cities around the world to launch her new book. It’s by invite-only. Anyone interested? I have access to a number of tickets!

P.P.P.S. Boudoir Divas going to Paris!