Even Icons Fall. Is It An Inevitability?

As we get older and time progresses, the harsh reality is, even things considered iconic can lose its prestige.


An entity at the icon level may not always stay at that level. In my 22 years of life I have seen this tragically happen time and time again. To me, Blockbuster was an iconic video rental store. It was a staple, and it was the norm to rent a couple DVD’s to watch on the weekend. In a few years, Netflix made sure they are the new movie watching experience icon. The iconic dial up tone is a thing of the past. Even the iconic study tools such as paper and pencils/pens will be forgotten and lost the status of “icon.”  Even my favorite rapper at a time is slowly losing his iconic status by steadily releasing mediocre music (Eminem –  Marshall Mathers LP 2 and Shady XV).


The question: Is losing your status inevitable?


Let’s take a look at McDonald’s and how they are attempting to maintain the Big Mac’s icon status through various marketing strategies.


Currently, there are many signs of losing their status. According to Ad Age, 40% of Millennials have never tried a Big Mac (uh oh) and Big Mac sales have been on a decline for 4 consecutive years. It is evident that something needs to be done.

McDonald’s plans on combating this decline by using a few methods. They introduced two new variations of the Big Mac, which has never been done before. The first one is Mac JR., the second is the Grand Mac., and the original Big Mac. Their reasoning for this, well because “there is a Big Mac for that.” They are unveiling a new strategy that makes the Big Mac purchase more personal. Chief Marketing Officer Deborah Wahl, said she wants the Golden Arches to reach audiences wherever they are, with content that is relevant to them at the right time. Her goal is to make Millennials celebrate special occasions with a Big Mac.


Only time will tell if the Big Mac is next in line to lose its “iconic” title.


Some marketing questions to consider:


Is this a smart strategy to boost Big Mac sales?

If only 60% of Millennials have tried a Big Mac, is it worth targeting Millennials?

Why not target a group that actually enjoys eating Big Mac?


Just a little food for thought from a marketer’s perspective….


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