Will McDonald’s Eventually Disappear from its Own Minimalist Campaigns?

Posted on by Patty Odell

There isn’t really much you can say about a new McDonald’s campaign because there really isn’t much to talk about.

A series of new posters shows a plain background with empty boxes or packages from a number of McDonald’s well-known menu items—like a Big Mac—with nothing but a few crumbs left. There are small golden arches on each package, but there’s no messaging or call to action. There is no URL and no people.

The minimalist strategy is part of a new wave of creative used by a growing number of brands, but the key is, of course, consumers have to be able to identify the brand without any words, messages or glaring logos. Even so, these kinds of campaigns can create intrigue, and social chatter, so a brave, not-so-well-known brand might be able to wade into minimalist territory with some striking creative and get some good results.

The McDonald’s posters, from TWBA/Paris, are the latest of in its minimalist campaign strategy. The campaign began in 2014 with 2,700 posters showing flattened illustrations of actual products with a mini golden arch in the corner. Even if the logo wasn’t present, many consumers would likely recognize the brand.

Then two years later, more posters were created of packaging using tiny emoji. “The Big Mac was made up of hundreds of little thumbs-up signs, for example. The fries were made from smiley faces. The sundae from musical notes and the Happy Meal from heart symbols,” The Stable reported.

Now comes the most stripped down creative of them all: the minimal packaging posters. The images need no words. One look at the imagery and the message is easily communicated: Those fries, that Big Mac, those Nuggets are so delicious that you want to eat every last bite. Time will tell how “minimalist” the agency will go for the brand. Will it be daring enough to drop the golden arches all together? I say, go for it!

Here’s a look at the three posters. You decide for yourself.

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