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McDonald’s Little Changes Make a Big Impact for Sustainable Brand Platform Launch



Developed by Leo Burnett London, the platform aims to communicate its positive impact on people, farming and the planet

McDonald’s Little Changes Make a Big Impact for Sustainable Brand Platform Launch

McDonald’s has launched a new brand platform and campaign, ‘Change a little, Change a lot’, to communicate its positive impact on people, farming and the planet after the brand set out its aim of net zero emissions across its entire UK & Ireland business by 2040 in its Plan for Change.

Released earlier this week, the Plan for Change is a comprehensive business and sustainability strategy which sets out ambitious goals and actions across four key areas – Planet, People, Restaurants and Food – to ensure the business leads positive change from farms to front counter.

‘Change a little, Change a lot’ is a new brand platform developed by advertising partner Leo Burnett London. It will see McDonald’s deliver multiple compelling messages to bring to life the actions and commitments in its Plan for Change and other marketing activity going forward.

Michelle Graham-Clare, chief marketing officer, McDonald’s, said: “We have a long history of making a positive impact where it really matters for people and the planet. But we are at a moment now where we need to accelerate our ambition. This new brand platform will enable us to talk about the actions we’re taking to improve opportunities for young people, help growers adopt sustainable farming practices and ensure our packaging is made from renewable, recycled or certified sources.  With 1,400 restaurants, over 23,000 British and Irish farmers and four million customers visiting us every day, we want to show how these and the other changes we’re making in our Plan for Change will make a real difference.”

On the strategy underpinning the campaign, Josh Bullmore, chief strategy officer, Leo Burnett, said: “We all want to make the world a better place, but most of us feel powerless to effect change. Often the environmental and societal issues we all face feel too big, too intangible, too out of reach. One of the great strengths of McDonald’s is that because of its size, any positive changes the business and its customers make together quickly add up to a lot.”

As part of its Plan for Change, McDonald’s has:

  • Pledged to help one million people gain new skills and open the door to jobs by 2030, including introducing a youth worker into every restaurant by 2024 and support 3,000 apprentices by 2025.
  • Set a target to ensure customer packaging is made from renewable, recycled or certified sources and designed to be recyclable or compostable by 2024, and is due to open its first restaurant built to a UK industry net zero emissions standard in Shropshire later this year.
  • Committed to go even further to source, quality, sustainable ingredients and support its farmers and suppliers, including investing in sector-leading research with a new Sustainable Beef Network.

Bringing to life the brand platform will be three 40 second TV ads that hero the small changes McDonald’s is making across three key areas: youth, farming and waste. The ads deploy a creative and multimedia approach to reflect how McDonald’s size means little positive changes, quickly add up to make a big difference – ‘Change a Little, Change a Lot’. 

The first of the TV ads, which focuses on waste, lands tonight with the ads on farming and youth to be rolled out incrementally during the month. Directed by Tom Ralph who was shortlisted for D&AD’s Next Director Award 2017, the creative features real people McDonald’s works with to deliver a new, dynamic, and energetic look and feel.

The creative for the first ad illustrates a series of examples of the actions McDonald’s is taking to reduce waste, which people may be unaware of. This includes converting used cooking oil into biodiesel for its trucks and recycling McCafé cups into greeting cards or turning Happy Meal toys into kids’ playgrounds. The ad lands on the pledge that McDonald’s plans to collect, recycle, compost or reuse as much waste as possible “Which just goes to show when you change a little, you change a lot”

The three TV ads will also be supported by 30 second radio ads, again featuring real people McDonald’s works with. Running alongside TV and radio will be a social campaign on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube that offers bite size information on each of the changes McDonald’s is making. Media planning and buying will be handled by OMD and in-restaurant support will be delivered by Trayliners and posters.


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Genres: Dialogue, People

Categories: Retail and Restaurants , Fast food

Leo Burnett London, Thu, 07 Oct 2021 12:02:00 GMT