McDonald’s’ staple sandwich consists of two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on a sesame seed bun, as the classic advertising jingle goes. Notably absent from the recipe, though, is the extravagant topping of mac and cheese—but not for long, if Kraft Heinz gets its way.
Starting today, the company is kicking off a campaign to persuade the fast food giant to add its cheesy noodle dish to the Big Mac to create a hybrid of two of the United States’ most popular comfort foods. And after all, Kraft Heinz rhetorically asks in a press release, “Can it really be called a ‘Big Mac’ if it doesn't have ‘mac’?”
The campaign was developed by New York-based shop Johannes Leonardo, a standout agency on Ad Age’s 2022 A-List that has handled a number of well-received marketing pushes for Kraft Heinz since winning some of its key business accounts, including that of Kraft Mac & Cheese, two years ago.
In a bid to garner public backing for its proposal, Kraft has launched a web page dedicated to the cause dubbed WheresTheMac.com.
Consumers can use the site to prompt Twitter bots to send pre-drafted tweets that are addressed to McDonald’s; write an original tweet from their personal account that will automatically tag McDonald’s’ corporate Twitter handle and add the hashtag “#wheresthemac”; or fill out the restaurant chain’s online feedback form and request that mac and cheese be added to the Big Mac.
McDonald’s is not involved in the stunt at any level.
Macaroni fanatics have apparently been adding Kraft Mac & Cheese to their burgers at home for years, said Christina Brown, associate brand manager at Kraft Heinz. “But why can’t we make it easier for comfort-craving enthusiasts? We believe that the time for change is now, and we are hopeful that America’s most iconic burger, the Big Mac, will start to add the most important mac of all,” she said.
Kraft also plans to make it worthwhile for consumers who throw their weight behind the push to add mac & cheese to the Big Mac, with the company offering coupons for a free box of the product in question to anyone who tweets in favor of the crossover meal.
It remains to be seen whether Kraft’s push to alter the Big Mac, which has remained largely unchanged since the sandwich was first developed 55 years ago, will succeed. But it will likely draw eyeballs and drive engagement with Kraft Heinz, which clocked in at No. 4 on Ad Age’s most recent Marketers of the Year list.
Over the past few years, the company has cemented its cultural cache with a number of clever and sometimes provocative ad campaigns for its enormous family of products, which ranges from Kraft Mac & Cheese to Jet-Puffed marshmallows to Jell-O.