McDonald’s just completed a bigger, better Happy Meal toys program as part of its tie-in with A Bug’s Life, the second full-length feature film from Disney’s Pixar Studios. Pixar first scored with Toy Story, and has earned strong reviews for its new film. The promo ended Dec. 31.
The centerpiece of McDonald’s promo was a nationwide offer for a series of eight moveable Happy Meal toys – Hopper the grasshopper hopped, Rosie the spider crawled, and Heimlich the caterpillar inched along. McD also sold clip-on watches in three styles for $1.99 each with the purchase of an Extra Value Meal or Happy Meal. There were also four trading cards, one free with purchase of a Happy Meal, and a special apple cinnamon dipping sauce for Chicken McNuggets during the promotion.
McD also ran animated ads, a first for Pixar, which created special footage just for the spots. Actor Dave Foley (TV’s Newsradio), who lent his voice to the movie, narrated the spots, which broke after Thanksgiving. Cyrk-Simon Worldwide, Los Angeles, handles McDonald’s promotions. DDB Needham, Chicago, created general-market TV spots; Leo Burnett Co., Chicago, created Happy Meal spots.
Instead of relying solely on media ads to drive traffic, McDonald’s for the first time expanded its marketing with toy displays and ticket-booth signage in thousands of movie theaters nationwide.