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McDonald's runs mobile ad campaign for new M Burger

The launch of the McDonald's Corp.'s M Burger in France stood out for its innovative use of mobile advertising.

The fast food franchise ran banner ads on the Microsoft Advertising Mobile Media network. The brand used animated banner formats instead of traditional mobile banners.

"Fast food is all about mobility," said Noah Elkin, senior analyst at eMarketer, New York. "For customers, that means finding a restaurant and eating on the go.

"Mobile is a logical channel choice for fast food purveyors, especially to the extent that it can help their customers achieve those goals," he said.

The M Burger is made with 100 percent beef, has batavia lettuce, tomato and emmental cheese on a stone-baked ciabatta roll.

The goal of the campaign was to drive awareness of the new McDonald's M Burger among 25 to 44-year-old men and stressed the premium ingredients used to create it.

Ad formats such as Windows Live Messenger tabs and video streaming banners, enhanced animated banner ads and a homepage takeover running on French sports sites ran across the Microsoft Advertising mobile network for the very first time.

The sites that McDonald's took over with ads were http://football.fr and http://l'equipe.fr.

Microsoft conducted research to test the effectiveness of these new animated banners and found that the campaign delivered a brand recall of about 70 percent.

Furthermore, the brand awareness with the new type of banners was 13.2 percent higher than Microsoft's traditional banners.

The M Burger banners encouraged consumers to click to find out more about the new burger.

Consumers that clicked were rerouted to the McDonald's mobile site at http://mcdonlads.fr, where they could find out more about the burger.

On the first Wednesday after the campaign's launch, banners encouraged consumers to click to find the McDonald's closest to them, via its restaurant locator tool.

The mobile advertising campaign delivered 1.3 million impressions and a 4.6 percent click-through rate.

Microsoft's post-campaign research found that brand favorability reached 75.5 percent amongst those exposed to the new banners, an improvement of 5.3 percent over traditional banner formats.

The research also showed that the new banners delivered message association of 66.5 percent, a 9.1 percent improvement over traditional formats.

The enhanced mobile banner ad developed by Microsoft Advertising allows more fluent animation and far richer creative possibilities.

For the M Burger launch, these were used to bring key messages around product quality to life.

"Fast food chains have effectively leveraged mobile by understanding their customers and their needs and creating mobile services and offers that put the chains in front of customers when they're on the go," Mr. Elkin said.