McDonald's $800 Million-Plus U.S. Ad Account Up For Grabs

Fast-food giant McDonald’s has put its U.S. creative ad account into review, the company confirmed Monday.

The account has been handled for decades by incumbents DDB, part of Omnicom and Leo Burnett, the Publicis Groupe agency. DDB sibling OMD handles the client's U.S. media agency assignment, which is not part of the review.

McDonald’s spent $824 million on measured media in 2015, down about 12% from the $940 million it spent in 2014, according to Kantar Media.

Internally the review is being led by Deborah Wahl, McDonald’s USA Chief Marketing Officer, who joined the company a little more than two years ago. She has retained consultant Flock to help manage the process.

The big chain has invited holding companies to make pitches, and a McDonald's rep confirmed that the incumbents are invited to participate through their holding companies. 

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Wahl issued this statement:

“We are committed to modernizing McDonald's, including how we create customer-facing content. While we value the relationships we have with our current agencies, and will only ever work with companies that share our values, we recognize the agency world is evolving. As such, McDonald’s USA is exploring solutions that will provide us with greater integrated strategic thinking, creativity and brand consistency across all our consumer touch points.” 

The incumbent shops didn’t immediately respond to queries for comment.

2 comments about "McDonald's $800 Million-Plus U.S. Ad Account Up For Grabs".
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  1. Kevin Lee from Didit, April 26, 2016 at 1:21 p.m.

    Title seems a bit misleading.  According to the article the media buying is not up for review, just creative and strategy.
    I guess mentioning the media spend adds context, but isn't directly related to fees a creative/strategy shop can charge.

  2. Alex Flores from Empty Space, April 27, 2016 at 10:06 a.m.

    "McDonald’s USA is exploring solutions that will provide us with greater integrated strategic thinking, creativity and brand consistency across all our consumer touch points.”

    Ouch. That's a little harsh to say considering DDB and Leo are world-class creative powerhouses.

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