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McDonald’s Big Hot Jalapeño Turns Up Winter Heat

Is it hot in here or is McDonald’s signaling its willingness to bring some heat to menus? Having shown a willingness to go spicy but displaying a reluctance to venture too far into the world of chiles, the Arches are ending the year on a hot note in a few markets. Burger King has specialized […]

Big America Time Again at McDonald’s in Japan

One great thing about burgers is their power to unite the world by showing us that we don’t necessarily understand each other’s cultures very well. Case in point is the latest Big America promotion that began at McDonald’s in Japan this week. It introduces a series of four burgers with thoroughly American names and vaguely […]

Burger King Calls McDonald’s Ad “Degrading”


Viral marketing means never having to say you’re sorry. Ad Age reports that McDonald’s in Germany is not airing a TV commercial that pokes fun at rival Burger King, which protested the ad. However, the commercial (watch it here) is available all over YouTube and has been seen by thousands, netting exposure without expense. In […]

Burgers of the Year: Good, Bad & Ugly

This turned out to be another tough year not just for burger joints but for every restaurant that isn’t named McDonald’s. Consumers may be more easily reached thanks to the rise of social media, but they are no more easily persuaded, as NPD’s recent report of flat customer traffic in 2011 attests. And that helps […]

NRA Serves Hot Food Trends for 2012

The National Restaurant Association released its “What’s Hot in 2012” survey, compiling the opinions of nearly 1,800 members of the American Culinary Federation about what the food trends will be. Buying locally and serving children responsibly are at the top for next year. View the complete list here. The top 15 overall are: 1. Locally […]

NPD: All the Dealing Hasn’t Moved the Needle

When the good news is that quick-service restaurants’ customer counts are flat, you know times are tough. But that’s how it is with the report issued today by researcher The NPD Group. Despite all the ballyhooed “social media” that consultants have pushed operators to use, despite Groupon and other daily-deal channels and in spite of […]

Wendy’s Tries Flatbreads; CKE Fires its Agency


[During the 12/14 quarterly earnings call, CKE CEO Andy Puzder said agency David & Goliath was fired because over time the company and agency’s “vision for the brand diverged materially.” He said he liked “Anthem” and “Miss Turkey” ads, but after that ads declined. Hamblor was not on his favorites list, apparently] Wendy’s has tried […]

McDonald’s Creates “Originals” Series for Facebook

From the opening shot of a McDonald’s restaurant (followed by restaurant interiors), it’s clear who’s paying the bills for “The Originals,” a made-for-the web series now showing on Facebook and YouTube. Created for McDonald’s Canada (which promotes it via Twitter), the series follows two young guys, Jason and Bryce, who are preparing to pitch an […]