Photo: Mark O’Brien / LinkedIn
In Asia, McDonald’s allows customers to order food with their mobile phones, or from street kiosks, so that customers have multiple options while on the go (and less contact with staff), according to DDB North America CEO Mark O’Brien. (DDB handles McDonald’s advertising in the U.S.)Kiosks are “so you don’t have to wait in line,” he told us over lunch recently (in New York). In the U.S., of course, McDonald’s customers must mostly walk or drive to the physical store and wait on line to order and receive food.
But in Asia, McDonald’s uses the slogan “If you can’t come to us, we’ll come to you.” The chain has a massive delivery operation, with motorcycle drivers zipping around cities carrying heated and insulated boxes to keep fries hot and McFlurrys cold.
Asian customers just don’t want to stand in line for food, it seems. The company is even considering replacing its call centres with web ordering architecture, so that customers don’t have to deal with any humans until the food is actually delivered.
In France, McDonald’s customers can pay with their mobile phones.
But don’t expect to see any of this in America any time soon, O’Brien tells us. “McDonald’s will likely test in some markets and then roll out; delivery is already available in New York, but would be evaluated on a market by market basis,” he says. (New York already has a few locations that deliver.) But delivery likely isn’t coming to less dense areas like Los Angeles or the suburbs.
The reason: McDonald’s already invested in a huge drive-through infrastructure.
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