McDonald’s Ad Commits SEO Faux Pas

If McDonald’s wanted to get the whole world talking about its ad campaign, the firm can certainly count it a great success. Whether people are discussing it for the right reasons, however, is another matter entirely.

McDonald's Ad Commits SEO Faux Pas

About the ad

The TV ad consists of the actress Mindy Kaling wearing a yellow dress against a maroon background, talking about “the place where Coke tastes so good”. She suggests that viewers head to Google to search for the place in question. Fifteen seconds of advert, and although Coke and Google are both mentioned, there is no word of the place in question, although the colours alone should lead to subliminal associations with the McDonald’s burger franchise.

Why is it such a faux pas?

Failing to mention the name of your brand in an ad campaign is certainly surprising. It goes firmly against the grain not to give a name check to the company paying the advertising bill, particularly when both Coca-Cola and Google are reaping the benefits of having their names mentioned on prime-time television.

Where the faux pas becomes unforgivable, however, is when the question about “the place where Coke tastes so good” is entered into Google. A ream of results bringing up articles deriding the advert’s poor SEO techniques flash up on the screen. McDonald’s name is certainly mentioned, but surely not in the way that the advertising agency – We Are Unlimited – intended when they dreamed up this campaign.

McDonald's Ad Commits SEO Faux Pas

It’s true that SEO is a specialised field, but whether you are seeking out help with your SEO in Dublin or Derby, you would not unreasonably expect experts such as to promote your own brand, not those of companies in completely different industries.

Is it all a big mistake?

According to Adweek, the campaign has been carefully designed to appeal to teenagers and young adults, who like to draw their own conclusions about products.

That may be true, but most commentators agree that by failing to create so much as a dedicated landing page for the campaign, the company has completely failed to capitalise on its marketing strategy. This error has allowed the results pages for the search query posed in the advert to become hijacked by bad press about McDonald’s, which is surely the last thing that the company intended.