McDonald’s on St. Patrick’s Day

By Lippe Taylor / Posted on 23 March 2010

If you’ve ever been in Chicago on St. Patrick’s Day, then you know that the city turns the Chicago River green in celebration. It’s quite a sight, actually.

This year, Chicago-based McDonald’s decided to get in on the act and placed a huge Shamrock Shake on the bank of the river and made it look like the green beverage was pouring in. Pretty clever, actually.

McDonald’s is a big part of Chicago business culture (and every day life I suppose) so it kind of makes sense that they would attempt something so high profile right downtown.

More interesting than the stunt itself though, is all the commentary that came the days following. Comments attached to news articles that covered the “story” and in numerous blogs too. Many people hated it! They said it looked like garbage sitting on the bank of the river. It really got a pretty negative reaction.

I see the point. It looks like litter that’s been tossed from a car. But … I think the people of Chicago probably “got it”. This wasn’t trash on the side of the road, just a little fun on a fun holiday. In my house, the Shamrock Shake is a St. Patrick’s Day tradition so it didn’t bother me.

From a marketing perspective, a good attempt from McDonald’s to insert themselves into a holiday tradition. But is part of the reaction because they were not invited in?

What’s your experience? Jim