McDonald’s taps Wieden + Kennedy NY as lead agency


This is not good news for former McDonald’s bespoke agency We Are Unlimited and the Chicago market in general.

Chicago-based McDonald’s USA announced today that WKNY will serve as the lead creative agency for its U.S. business, the largest market in the McDonald’s system.

The announcement comes after an extensive evaluation of its marketing agency model to support current and future growth with innovative and creative brand building campaigns.

The move builds on McDonald’s Bigger Bolder Vision 2020 business transformation strategy to bring more craveable and delicious food offerings, such as the Fresh Beef Quarter Pounder, an improved customer experience in our newly renovated restaurants and modern conveniences, such as McDelivery, to customers.

“As marketers for the iconic McDonald’s brand, we have the responsibility to continue to innovate and modernize our marketing. We are transforming every aspect of our business, and now took the opportunity to ensure that we have the right agency partners in place to accelerate our growth,” said Morgan Flatley, McDonald’s USA Chief Marketing Officer.

She added, “We are confident the talented team at Wieden + Kennedy New York will drive the creative excellence that will influence culture and develop relationships with our customers in new ways. We would like to thank We Are Unlimited for their work over the last three years supporting key moments in our transformation and operational excellence.”

She went onto say that WKNY was chosen for its strong strategic and creative output and successful track record in developing provocative content to develop relationships between customers and well-known brands including Nike, Bud Light, Coca-Cola (for Sprite and Vitamin Water) and Delta.

McDonald’s believes that the agency has demonstrated agility to quickly learn McDonald’s and develop creative ideas that will influence culture and drive customer excitement. The talent on the team will bring innovative storytelling capabilities and strategies to McDonald’s that will create more powerful and transformative experiences for their customers.

Colin Mitchell, McDonald’s SVP Global Marketing, added, “Globally, we are trying to evolve our creative, like the rest of the customer experience. This move allows us to push our vision for modern marketing in this very important market. Given the significant transformation across the U.S. business and the dynamic customer landscape.”

“We’re incredibly excited and honored to be part of the McDonald’s team at this critical juncture in their business transformation,’ said Managing Director of Wieden + Kennedy New York Neal Arthur. “McDonald’s has created some of the most iconic branding, advertising and marketing initiatives the world has ever known, and we look forward to working across the company and agency network to continue this rich tradition.”

ALSO READ: We Are Unlimited reduces staff by possibly 18

This announcement comes after the July departure of We Are Unlimited, ECD Toygar Bazarkaya and layoffs this week at the agency.

Over the last three years, the company has implemented key initiatives to improve the customer experience, including the acquisition of Dynamic Yield, with personalized Drive Thru technology, the agreement to acquire Apprente, with voice-based technology, the expansion of McDelivery, as well as the development of McDonald’s Global Mobile App, Mobile Order and Pay, indoor and outdoor digital menu boards and self-order kiosks.

WKNY will begin work in the next month to plan for 2020. We Are Unlimited will continue to support the business with a focus on operational excellence.

No word on how this affects current agency partners including TBWA\Chiat\Day, Burrell, IW Group and Alma. Or how this affects WK’s relationship with YUM! Brand foods which includes KFC.

Source: McDonald’s