Mc Donalds Ads in the Philippines

Posted in Business on October 31, 2014
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McDonald’s “Karen Po

TV ads may contain lasting taglines in our thoughts, thus bringing these campaigns any product into fame and rising sales or profit. Usually, big companies and businesses can afford to put their product promotion on nationwide TV. A recurring ad on TV may cost hundred thousands or millions of pesos. Come to think of it, it is really expensive, but though this marketing campaign costs that high, the return on investment can be so rewarding.

TV commercials are part of the Filipinos way of life. We can see children mimicking commercial jingles and even teenagers having fun of those cool and humorous ads on TV. But how good or safe is an advertising campaign towards children?

In 2001, McDonalds released an advertising campaign that made history, as it has become one of the most unforgettable ads in the Philippines.



The advertisement starts with two individuals. A grandfather and a teenaged grandchild, having their meal at McDonalds. The grandfather in the commercial implies an old man suffering of what it seems like an Alzheimer’s Disease. He keeps on mistaking Karen for another grandchild named “Gina”. Karen responded “Karen po”. They exchange few more lines which were meant for Gina, yet Karen still replies“Karen po”. The ad ends with a flattering moment for Karen when she noticed her grandfather, slicing his burger and kept the other half and said that it’s for her favorite grandchild, Karen. The scene ends, leaving Karen with a wide smile.



The advertising campaign garnered positive feedback. It touched the hearts of the masses, boosts the name of the company, and became viral. Many applauded the ad’s simple yet touching storyline, script, or even just the whole concept. Some of the viewers even tagged the commercial as better than other McDonalds ads featuring Sharon Cuneta.

But what is in that commercial that made it tick?



For years, McDonald’s tight competitor, Jolibee, used a Family-Oriented or Society-Oriented formula in most of their advertisements. Many Filipinos would relate to that idea, thus, their advertisements eventually worked versus McDonalds.

McDonald’s style was, and is still being used, is an infomercial with a celebrity endorser in it. Most of their ads would mention the perfection of their burgers and other sorts of information about their food, which some of the Filipino viewers don’t really care about.

In 2001, McDonalds shifted their advertising gear towards family, resulting this classic TV ad.

The campaign geared towards a Grandfather-Grandchild relationship, which uses our Filipino term “Po” to induce respect to the elderly. It also shows value of love as what the Grandfather implies in the ad, however, it also shows favoritism. The value of family is also specified despite the senile condition of the grandfather.

Since the campaign became a hit that time, it somehow strengthens the usage of “Po” among children towards elderly. Though it was not one of the main purpose of the ad, the additional outcome turned out positively to the younger viewers.

Is it a good commercial among kids? Though the advertisement doesn’t have cheerful songs or choreography or even top celebrities in it, I find this ad good for the kids that made them want to hug their grandparents.