McDonald's Corporation is the world's leading food service organisation. The corporation started out as a small drive-through in 1948 by two brothers, Dick and Mac McDonald. Raymond Albert Kroc, a salesman, saw a great opportunity in this market and advised Dick and Mac to expand their operation and open new restaurants. In 1961 Kroc bought out the McDonald brothers. By 1967 McDonalds expanded its operations to countries outside the U.S.A. This expansion has led the Corporation to open more than 30,000 McDonald's restaurants in 120 countries, producing billions of dollars in annual revenues. This success has largely been due to a very effective marketing strategy.
To understand McDonald's Marketing Strategy it is necessary to perform a brief analysis of the McDonald's Corporation's strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.
The first strength of McDonald's has been their product strategy. Throughout the past three decades they have simply been a hamburger and fries Restaurant. Growing customer wants and needs along with increased competition has forced them to alter and improve their menu to better fit the environment. Factors such as growing competition and consumers becoming more health conscious have forced them to make these changes, one example of which is the "New Tastes Menu", which caters for the changing needs of their customers. .
Promotion has also been a strength of McDonald's. They have always focused promotion around good food, friendly folks, and fun. They have also spent a considerable amount of money on promotional programs such as Monopoly, Happy Meals, and the Big Mac. In addition to these promotions, McDonald's signed a ten-year contract with Disney combining promotions for food items with Disney movies. McDonalds is able to successfully promote its produces because of its immense financial resources.
In addition to promotion, McDonald's has also been successful at placing restaurants in every available position.