McDonald's Case study Literacy Store by Arc Chicago, Leo Burnett Chicago

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Literacy Store

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Industry Fast food
Media Case study
Market United States
Agency Arc Chicago
Agency Leo Burnett Chicago
Production Radar Studios
Released September 2013


Cannes Lions, 2014
MEDIA LIONS Product & Service: Retail, E-Commerce & Restaurants BRONZE

Credits & Description

Category Experiential Advertising / Installations
Agency Leo Burnett / Chicago + Arc Worldwide / Chicago
Client McDonald's
Title Literacy Store
Art Director Pablo Jimenez
Writer Kamil Kowalczyk
Chief Creative Officer Susan Credle
Creative Director John Hansa, Tony Katalinic
Producer Denis Giroux, Ross Greenblat, Benjamin Milan
Agency Leo Burnett Chicago / Chicago, Arc World Wide / Chicago
Executive Creative Director Jon Wyville, Dave Loew
Account Director: Jennifer Cacioppo (Leo Burnett)
Account Executive: Jennifer Klopf (Leo Burnett)
Account Executive: Meredith Metzi (Leo Burnett)
Digital Production: Matt Kuttan (Leo Burnett)

Results and Effectiveness:
In just two weeks, more than 20 million Happy Meals containing original children’s books were distributed nationwide. That’s 5 million more books than the entire 'The Hunger Games' trilogy sold in the whole of 2013. The Literacy Store supported the McDonald’s books effort and created a conversation about the importance of reading.

Creative Execution:
To demonstrate McDonald’s support for children’s literacy, a McDonald’s restaurant in Chicago was transformed into The Literacy Store.

We replaced all of the regular words in the restaurant environment with nonsensical, unreadable language, altering the digital menu board, posters, tray liners, and restroom signs. Even ketchup packets and employee nametags were made illegible.

Restaurant visitors were left to wonder what was going on until the digital menu board revealed the message: “To a child who can’t read, the world can be a confusing place. To spread the joy of reading, we’re including original kids’ books in every Happy Meal.”

Insights, Strategy and the Idea:
Starting on November 1st - National Literacy Day – for two weeks, McDonald’s replaced the toy in Happy Meals with an original children’s book. Books have an incredible impact on children’s lives; unfortunately, 1 in 4 children in America grow up without learning how to read. To promote the books effort, we created an ambient live event called the Literacy Store.