Posts Tagged ‘marketing practices’

Clowning Around with Charity: How McDonald’s Exploits Philanthropy and Targets Children

New report from Eat Drink Politics exposes McDonald’s charitable activity as a marketing tool to deflect critics

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Pop quiz: Who do you think funds the hundreds of Ronald McDonald Houses around the nation? McDonald’s right? Sort of, but not really. While McDonald’s gets 100 percent of the brand benefit from Ronald McDonald House Charities, the burger giant only provides about 20 percent of its funding globally. At the local level, it’s closer to ten percent, with some of that money coming from donation boxes at McDonald’s outlets, that is, from customers.

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McDonald’s “Behind Scenes” Video Just Another PR Stunt

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Last week McDonald’s Canada posted a video on YouTube entitled, “Behind the scenes at a McDonald’s photo shoot,” which purports to answer a question from a customer on why McDonald’s food looks different in ads than it does in reality. So to answer this question, Hope Bagazzi, director of marketing for McDonald’s Canada takes us on a tour of how the food stylists with the company’s advertising firm prepare a cheeseburger and how that differs from what it really looks like. The idea, so it appears, is to be transparent and honest about how McDonald’s portrays its food in advertisements.

The video has gone viral, inching toward six million views. I even tweeted it myself. But one of my followers who lives in Vancouver, Anne Rosenberg was not fooled. She sent me the following email:

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One health blogger’s change of heart over Pepsi Refresh

My readers know by now that I am not exactly a fan of PepsiCo’s mega-marketing campaign disguised as philanthropy known as the Pepsi Refresh Project. As I wrote about previously, the nation’s largest food company is exploiting schoolchildren as young as age 6 in an effort to brand itself as the world’s savior.

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Why is McDonald’s listed a resource for Childhood Obesity Awareness Month?


I am not a fan of any sort of “awareness” month as I find the concept trivializes important health issues. Are we only supposed to care about heart disease, diabetes, etc, during that one month of the year? And I rarely see anything of substance come from the month-long activities, just the usual ineffective educational campaigns, instead of meaningful public policy reforms. Plus many issues tend to crowd themselves into certain months, so it all becomes background noise. September is one such month. Among other causes (e.g., “cholesterol education”), September has been proclaimed “Childhood Obesity Awareness Month” by Congress and President Obama. Continue reading →

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