From advertising methods, r putation, store visibility and location through to the store environment and actual products a nd pricing, McDonald’s aims to engage young people. The children and youth of today are immersed in digital technology daily and are the obvious target for digital marketing strategies, given their avid use Of mobile phones a nd social networks such as Facebook and Twitter. McDonald’s targets youth through advertising on websites and social media that are particularly popular amongst young people.
McDonald’s stores are easily identified by their uniform shop front designs an their locations in easily visible and high traffic areas. The store environments themselves also a ppeal to young people. Food is ordered and served quickly both through the counter and the drive through. The vibrant colours mainly red and yellow, appeal to children as fun and food ass ociated and colourful playground areas provide children with entertainment.
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Clean tables and toilets are an added incentive for parents to choose a McDonald’s outlet as an eating venue for their families. McDonald’s constantly updates its special offers and promotions. The menu is always changing o meet current fads, trends and consumer preference (for example, the new BLT McMuffin). Young people particularly enjoy this approach. McDonald’s uses merchandise tieins to appeal to children who are aware of c urrent trends and pop culture for example the toys that come in Happy Meals.
The current toys are ‘Flutterby??? and ‘Adventure Time’ characters very familiar to young children who watch th e television shows. There are enticements to win meals and money at McDonald’s throug h webbased games or applications for children. The most important aspect of the McDonald’s Corporation is their actual food product. The next part of this extended response will examine the McDonald’s menu in light of t he current Australian Dietary Guidelines for Children and Adolescents (ADGCA).
One guideline within the ADGCA recommends that children and adolescents should eat plenty of cereals (in fact, that over a quarter of their food intake should come from g rain foods). These cereals should be of a wide variety (breads, rice, pasta, noodles) and preferabl y be whole grain. McDonald’s menu seems to roughly provide an appropriate proportion of cer eals according to the ADGCA. However, the carbohydrates used are almost exclusively wheat b sed with rolls and wraps, the only exception being the current crispy noodle dishes.