McDonald’s and DDB Sydney revive 1987 Big Mac promo, ‘passing the baton of the chant between generations’

McDonald's (Macca's) 4 second Big Mac Chant promo via DDB Sydney, adam&eveDDB, OMD, and Snapchat

The new version of the promo is in partnership with Snapchat, marking the platform’s first-ever AI-charged, voice machine learning campaign in Australia.

In its ongoing pursuit to inject new life into the legendary Big Mac, McDonald’s is bringing back a promotional campaign for the burger, first launched in 1987, through a partnership with Snapchat led by DDB Sydney, adam&eveDDB, and OMD.

The Big Mac Chant Challenge is a gamified rewards program that encourages participants to recite the chant, “Two all-beef patties, Special Sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on a sesame seed bun” in four seconds or less.

The promotion leverages social media to encourage fan participation, especially among younger generations, by introducing them to the chant already well known to their parents and grandparents.

McDonald's Big Mac four second chant promotion via DDB Sydney and Snapchat

Described as “passing the baton of the chant between generations,” by DDB Sydney’s executive creative director, Matt Chandler, the move marks Snapchat’s first-ever AI-charged, voice machine learning campaign in Australia – quite the departure from 1987, when fans had to go in-store to compete.

The bespoke lens uses Snap’s speech recognition technology to detect the correct list of ingredients from a trained machine learning model. If speech is not a viable option for users,Snapchat has also devised an alternative option with disability consulting firm Get Skilled Access (GSA), allowing users to tap on ingredients instead. 

Snap Inc.’s head of creative strategy for APAC, Haran Ramachandran, said the augmented reality lens “transforms the chant into a tactile and engaging challenge, where everyone can join the fun.”

Winners will receive a voucher code for a small fries and Coke, redeemable with any Mac Family range purchased between 17 April and 8 May, including the return of the Mac Jr. and Grand Big Mac.

The game is also available on TikTok and the MyMacca’s app.

The promotion is the second iteration of the bigger Original Mouthful brand platform for the Big Mac, first rolled out across TV and OOH earlier this month. 

The platform is a nostalgic tribute to the Big Mac’s 56-year legacy, drawing on DDB’s history with the fast food brand. 

Its 60 second hero film, directed by Leilani Croucher, pays homage to the enduring popularity of the Big Mac over the decades in Australian culture, featuring the classic chant that was originally crafted in the 1970s by DDB’s then-creative leader, Keith Reinhard, who is still emeritus chair at the agency today.  

McDonald’s marketing director Samantha McLeod said: “We have already had such an incredible response to the first phase of our Big Mac campaign with super fans already reciting the chant they remember so well and younger generations now bringing new life to the chant as well.”

See also: DDB Sydney brings back world’s oldest burger chant for Big Mac

During a media briefing held at the DDB offices in Sydney’s Ultimo on Tuesday, McLeod described the rationale behind the efforts to innovate the Big Mac, especially as it competes within the increasingly cluttered quick-service restaurant (QSR) vertical.

She said The Original Mouthful platform is a mission to “reignite the passion of our existing Big Mac fans and recruit new fans” in response to the ultimate insight discovered during the team’s R&D phase: the most iconic burger in the world was being overlooked.

McLeod added that the return of the Mac Jr. and Grand Big Mac also represented the “new and different occasions we plan in now,” adapting to the evolving format changes of the QSR market.

McDonald's Big Mac four second chant promotion via DDB Sydney and Snapchat OOH Fumble 2

While DDB strategy partner, Katharina Wynne, expressed how the imitation archival footage used in The Original Mouthful TVC tapped into cultural opportunities for McDonald’s to resonate with the cultural phenomena of ‘future nostalgia’ and ‘kidulting’.

“It was really about giving it relevance and resonance,” said Chandler, who said the team was inspired to recapture the innocent, unironic joy they saw in archival footage, the inspiration behind the latest recreation.

Not setting it in any one era, “we were trying to tell a story all the way through,” he said. 

McDonald's, DDB and Snapchat Big Mac 4 second challenge. Pictured - Samantha McLeod, Matt Chandler, Katharina Wynne & Haran Ramachandran

Samantha McLeod, Matt Chandler, Katharina Wynne, and Haran Ramachandran

The Big Mac chant challenge will be supported by a TVC and online video rollout, featuring additional promotional ads with decade-specific treatments, encouraging fans to take part and share their efforts on socials.

This will be further supported by an organic and paid social strategy, plus responsive digital out-of-home spots, all pushing the chant with prompts, attempts, and fumbles.

Australian celebrities have already taken on the four-second challenge in the jungle on Network 10’s I’m A Celebrity…Get Me Out Of Here! Australia. The Today Show’s Karl and Sarah will also be taking on the tongue-twister, as will clubs from the NRL and AFL, who will go head-to-head to see who can recite the chant the fastest.

McDonald's Big Mac four second chant promotion via DDB Sydney and Snapchat OOH Fumble



Client: McDonald’s Australia
Chris Brown: Chief customer officer
Samantha McLeod: Marketing director
Liz Whitbread: Senior brand manager
Luke Elzerman: Experience optimisation manager
Chloe Brannagan: Brand manager 

Creative Agency: DDB Sydney
Stephen de Wolf: National chief creative officer
Matt Chandler: Executive creative director
Cam Hoelter: Group creative partner
Stephanie Allen: Senior copywriter
Andrew Torrisi: Senior art director
Paul Jansen: Senior designer
Sophie Hackett: Junior art director (social)
Amy Morrison: Junior copywriter (social)
Mandy Whatson: Group managing partner
Adam Blaynee: Group business director
Chloe McIvor: Senior business manager
Rene Shalala: Executive producer
Jess Taylor: Producer
Katharina Wynne: Strategy partner
Katy Andrews: Director social and content strategy

Creative Agency: adam&eveDDB London
Richard Brim: Chief creative officer
Sarah Todd: Chief growth and integration officer
Martin Beverley: Chief strategy officer

Production Company: Revolver
Leilani Croucher: Director
Michael Ritchie: Managing director/co-owner
Pip Smart: Executive producer/partner
Serena Paull: Senior producer
Andrew Commis: DOP
Damien Drew:  Production designer
Sophie Fletcher: Costume designer

Post Production: ARC Edit
Daniel Fry: Executive producer
Sally Quade: Producer
Elise Butt: Editor
Edel Rafferty: Colourist
Richard Lambert: Online artist
Patrick Campbell: Online artist/VFX

Sound & Music: Smith & Western Sound
Nick West & Dan Higson

Media: OMD
Emily Bosler: Head of McDonald’s
Zoe May: Head of strategy
Catriona Oran Barthram: Head of comms planning
Hattie Dinger: Director, entertainment partnerships
Taylor Hilditch: Account director
Anna Heslop: Senior account manager
Matt Wallace: Senior manager, sport partnerships
Christian Agliozzo: Manager, sport partnerships

Platform: Snapchat
Dan King: Senior client partner
Bethany Rao-Davies: Senior account manager
Haran Ramachandran: Head of creative strategy, APAC
Claus Stangl: Senior creative strategist 
Chris Lewis – Senior creative producer

PR & Influencer: Mango
Tabitha Fairbairn: Managing director
Ashleigh Vallance: Senior account director
Nada Duyker: Account director
Sidney Balfour: Senior account manager

MyMacca’s app and POS: Akcelo
April Tunstall: Business lead
Melanie Tozer: Senior account director
Alex Kostiouk: Senior project manager

CRM: Digitas
David Huang: Account director

See also: 
DDB Melbourne’s Andrew Rovenko on what award-winning Rocketgirl photos say about creative limits
DDB and VW launch RooBadge, designed to save kangaroos and cars
Paralympics Australia and McDonald’s sign three-year partnership

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