Monday, March 15, 2010

Who is McDonald's main consumer?

Did you know that in business there are specific customers and audiences that companies pick to target to make people buy their products? And did you know that targeting kids is growing every year, especially in fast food industries like McDonald’s? And because of this, companies like McDonald’s are in strong business condition. Therefore, to demonstrate this better, I will explain why kids are being returned to buy McDonald's food.

I took a field trip to McDonald’s restaurant in Sunnyside, Queens, situated next to a busy street,Queens Blvd on Friday during brunch time.As I was sitting on this comfortable leather bench with a table front of it, I was looking around the smart, fancy restaurant. During my observation, I realized that there are two H.D T.V's with cable channels. Both televisions are across from the dinning room. What separates the dinning room are the benches, chairs and tables in between. Each T.V has a different channel, one with CNN, and the other with Nickelodeon. That is when I began to ask myself a question, why are there two T.V with two different channels? The reason is both T.V's are for two different age groups, young people and elderly people. Another reason that makes this dinning room separate is one side is for elders, and the other side is for teenagers. In the teenagers section, the teens can only not watch their favorite shows in Nickelodeon,but they can also play video games and board games.The only thing this McDonald’s restaurant does not have is a playhouse. It does, nevertheless, catch children's attention while eating there. During my observation, I also experience that there are more young customers than elder customers. The entire restaurant is filled with activities of young ones that I was able to hear screams, laughs, conversations and cries. Then, I recognized that those kids are here for enjoyment. They were actually enjoying themselves more than being in a public park.Therefore, entertainments are the main cause of kids return to McDonald's

Another reason is promotions. Eric Schlosser said in his book "The fast food nation," “the typical American child spends more time watching television than doing any other activity except sleeping. During the course of a year, he or she watches more than thirty thousand TV commercials.” page 46. It is absolutely a fact that during their time watching TV, thousands of TV commercials are being aired about McDonald’s promotions, like discounts and toys. Promotions of the toys are highly influential to the children if parents buy any kids a happy meal and the toys comes free. Therefore,the company is fully aware of this, which makes these youngsters return to the restaurant whenever the company airs different commercials with new animated characters that appear in movies and television screens, but majority of the teenagers are intrigued to get the ones they see in movies. For example, I have experienced this through my nephew and niece. Whenever they see new McDonald’s advertisements with cartoon characters, they always want to buy a happy meal, especially the movie characters. Sometimes, if the parents can’t afford to buy it, the kids go out of control. They begin to “nag” as Eric Schlosser indicated. It is true because I have seen this scenario during my field research. Only different action happened in this scene; the parent left the restaurant with empty handed because the kid did not want to stop crying.I guess some parents are more strict and have control over their kids.

In conclusion, during this experiment, which I did in McDonald’s thought me that this company would do anything to accomplish to keeping their company going, that includes triggering on children’s mind to buy things . Before this experiment and reading “The American way,Your trusted Friend” anything from small to big ideas can change anything, even a person’s personality, it just that you have to know and study the precise one to sway.


  1. indeed they are just using kids."their ads give children another reason to ask for the product"

  2. Hey man,
    I like the way your writing flows and I can definitely appreciate your effort in providing a detailed description of the restaurant, the sights, the sounds, the sentiment; It almost feels as if I'm there.

  3. I like how you gave a detailed description on McDonalds from how it was setup. I like the observation of the customers, I guess they really know how to target people well. I enjoyed it very much.