OPINIONMarketing

Why restaurant mascots have been benched this ad season

Restaurant Rewind: The onetime marketing superstars have lost the spotlight to food, guests and less-controversial employees. The spokesfigures' past may explain why.

Looking to hire restaurant pros with a proven knack for delighting customers?

Have you thought about Ronald McDonald or the Burger King?

They could use the work, as this week’s Restaurant Rewind podcast attests. Host and Restaurant Business Editor-at-Large Peter Romeo looks at how onetime superstar mascots have been sidelined by the current trend of spotlighting food, guests and less-controversial team members.

What many consumers and even seasoned restaurant marketers might not appreciate are the colorful pasts those spokesfigures logged before being largely mothballed—as Romeo notes, the Grimace now gets more exposure than Ronald McDonald on McDonald’s website.

The episode looks at the rise and fall of the mascot as big-chain figurehead.

Download it and every installment wherever you get your podcasts.

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