McDonald’s Social

Social media has changed. Ad blockers, content blindness and algorithm changes have led to brands and publishers seeing organic reach dropping to less than 2% of total. If McDonald's were going to bring good times to their 16-24 audience through social, then corporate or dull wouldn’t cut it.

Our strategy demanded content that was instantly understandable, instantly shareable and always relevant in the light-speed world of culture trends for our audience. We knew that this needed to be true across our content, our format choices and the environment too. As a result we ensured that we were immediately on board with newly released ad formats – for example, our ‘“TAP AND HOLD TO REVEAL YOUR INNER MOST DESIRES” post (see supporting assets) ensured that the format and the way it would be consumed (thumbs on a mobile) would be part of the shareable enjoyment. We were also first to the punch for cultural trends through memetic content. Great examples of which are our “NOT YOU” and “NAILED IT” posts which were inherently part of the cultural world our audience lived in. However perhaps the best example is the headline grabbing, brain-bending “Bring McNuggets” optical illusion that was talked about across the globe in headlines on national and international news sites.

The shift in content on the McDonald’s social media channels speaks for itself, however some of our highlights are truly amazing – “TAP AND HOLD” delivered 40 million in organic reach for a single post, our engagement rate is 4%, well above the previous internal standard and industry benchmarks. Overall for the year we’ve driven an astounding 91 million organic reach – 91 million feel good moments that bring McDonald’s closer to culture, to great content and to the hearts of our audience. An audience that we know definitely doesn’t see us corporate or dull anymore, since we’ve seen a huge increase in positive social sentiment of 21%. ‘Good Times’ for our audience and good times for McDonald's.

The results to date include an increase in engagement per post from an average of 0.5/1 per cent to three per cent, with a corresponding increase in positive PR about the brand.


Creative director

Claire Baker


Michael Ballantyne & Lee Pitman

Account handler

Kelly Suckling & Kate Beardsley

Media Agency



Lee Tarrier

Project manager

Holly Turner-Smith

Junior Production Designer

Amelia Eve