I'm Not Lovin' It
I rented a car.
Man, I miss driving! I'm thisclose to buying a new car now that I live outside the city. Not that I really need one... everything here is in walking distance. But I just WANT one. A car is freedom.
If I know me (and I think I do), I'll hold out until maybe February then pull the trigger. They always have Presidents Day sales. And I believe George Washington would want me to have another BMW.
Anyway, back to my mini roadtrip...
About an hour before my Zipcar was due back, I got hungry. But I didn't have time to stop and eat. So, I did what about a billion other people do every day.
I went to McDonalds.
Why? Large fries always hit the spot. Especially when accompanied by a large orange Hi-C because that is a delicious drink that takes me back to my childhood. Occasionally, I'll mix it up and order a vanilla shake for salty-sweet nirvana. But I ignored about a 168 (yes, I counted!) things on the drive thru menu.
I go to Mickey D's for the fries, just the fries, and nothing but the fries.
I'm sure we've all been reading that the Golden Arches is in trouble. The only fast food restaurant with a bigger mess on their hands is Subway, and don't get me started on THAT.
How can this be?
Here, thankfully (?), declining sales are to blame. I've seen lots of finger pointing (minimum wage! questionable ingredients! health nuts! hot new competition!), and tons of random new ideas (customized menus! pay with love!).
But no real solutions.
Well, listen up, Ronald! The solution is simple: Embrace who you are.
This means 3 things:
1) Understand your customer.
Nobody walks through your doors because they're making good decisions. That ship has sailed. There are many healthier places to get a salad or a wrap. The people who want that for lunch or dinner don't want YOU, and no amount of fat-free dressing will fix that. Your people want fast, filling, cheap eats. So give the people what they want!
2) Stop trying to be fancy.
Ignore Chipotle or Five Guys or whatever other "fast casual" restaurant some consultant (who doesn't eat your food) recommended that you emulate. This means ditch the Angus burgers and the artisan grilled chicken and the Sriracha mayo and the frappes. Double down on the Dollar Menu.
3) French fries make your world go round.
I don't know how you make your fries. I suspect crack is involved. Because when they're good, they're amazing. Focus on being consistent with them (never stale, always fresh and hot and perfectly salted). Go back to your roots and make them the centerpiece of everything. Every ad. Every menu. Every order. It's not, "Would you like fries with that?" It's, "What would you like with your fries?" And while you're at it, turn Friday into a social media frenzy called Fryday. You're McDonalds -- if you want to own a day of the week, I bet you can.
So, quit clowning around and get down to McBusiness.
Those taters aren't going to fry themselves.
PS: I just heard you're about to launch breakfast all day... now you're talking!
tags: city life, food, rants