For $400, you can now marry at a Hong Kong McDonald's
McDonald’s restaurant, looking to cover all its marketing bases in attracting customers has added a new twist.
McDonald’s restaurant in Hong Kong, China is now offering cheapo $400.00 weddings for its customers over the more traditional matrimonial weddings that can cost upwards of $100,000 or more.
Asian culture, much like any culture are more concerned about portraying the image of wealth and success which is reflected on the parents of the bride than on the cheap sparing no expense to show off extravagant wedding displays to guests, or so it is believed, until now. How would this play out in Vancouver, British Columbia? Would any sane woman go for this? Perhaps only at gunpoint!
McDonalds, at one time mega successful in the 1970s to the mid 1980s with a smiley clown concentrated on the teen food culture, where teens would sit for hours in booths sharing a single happy meal. While a good idea at first, as from the outside it gave the public impression of a busy restaurant, McDonalds needed to make a profit, not provide a clubhouse for teens to loiter.
McDonalds starting media advertising by throwing all inclusive birthday parties for kids, complete with a Ronald McDonald clown and a choo-choo train car out in the back parking lot.
Again, what parent wouldn’t jump at the chance to get a gang load of messy noisy kids out of their pristine home and into a train, complete with a clown?
All was well in the world, until McDonalds turned to the Dark Side!
Following the success of the birthday party blitz, McDonalds Dark Side came out, a marketing idea in the form of providing every kids meal, an assortment of popular toys from Cartoons and Kids Movies. Soon a flurry of media advertising began with Toy product placement or TV advertisements of free toys with every kid meals. Toys, licensed especially from popular kiddie cartoons and kiddie movies like Disney was a marketing coup, rapidly followed by other fast food establishments looking to cash in.
By the 1990s McDonalds progressed more and more into a Disneyesque establishment, concentrating less and less on food. Soon large play land monstrosities were seen outside McDonalds, eclipsing any view of the Golden Arches. It seemed food was less important as a hook, as McDonalds seem to be more of play structure and Toy Empire, with food as an accompaniment.
Marketing gurus now had that additional edge, that edge being young children who we all know control mommy and daddies purse strings. One only need be a parent of young children to understand why parents dread driving down any road with a McDonalds.
Failure to distract your 5 year old child, short of throwing a bag over their head before you pass by a McDonalds will result in Dad! Dad! Dad! McDonalds!, McDonalds! I want a toy, they have Buzz Light-year!! I NEED, I WANT!!!!! Puleeeeeeeeeeeezzzzzzzeee! Dad, hey, DAD!!!!, STOP!, STOP!, MOM!!, MOM!!, DAD!, followed by frantic kicking of the back of the driver’s seat, with violent spastic contortions only a red faced child can do strapped in a car seat, making any Circque du Soleil acrobat green with envy and Priests at the ready to conduct an exorcism.
While Mom is usually given the first right of refusal in any given child request, weekend Dads and Grandparents eager to please are not of the same mindset, some will veer across multiple traffic lanes endangering life and limb to fulfill the request of a frantic 40 pound tyke.
Parents soon find themselves with a McDonald’s meal intact, with the toy immediately extracted, though expensive for the parent, a boon for the homeless man rummaging through the McDonalds trash bin.
Not to be outdone the fast food competition soon followed with similar marketing strategies.
In the last few years McDonalds seems to have reverted to the adult and teen market, providing a Friends TV show atmosphere, sans Chandler and Phoebe, complete with comfy chairs, fireplaces and more emphasis on healthy food and choice international coffees.
Will the McDonalds all inclusive Marriage package work in North America? While cheaper than a Vegas quickie wedding, one gets what they pay for.
I am betting any man who delves into the realm of wedding planner without consulting his prospective wife first, looking for cheap, may find himself alone, at the computer, McDee in hand, Supersizing his online dating portfolio.