McDonald’s Sriracha May Fail to Launch

McDonald’s sriracha may fail to launch

McDonald’s has some tried and true menu items. Winners that came and stayed for the long haul like the Big Mac, the Quarter Pounder, and McNuggets. They also have more than their fair share of misses. Remember Hula Burger? Mighty Wings? The McHot Dog, McLean Deluxe, McDLT, and the Arch Deluxe.

Each of these failed items had a small fan base – too small, as it turned out. They also had a target market in mind … and that target didn’t really mind when the items fell off the menu. Now, McDonald’s is going after Millennials with a generational favorite: sriracha sauce.

The new option was debuted with a sriracha and kale burger – yes, really – this past July. The item was available for a limited time, and it received a lot less interest than other limited offerings. The McRib comes to mind.

Now, though, McDonald’s is trying something new. Instead of just offering a sandwich no one was really asking for, they decided to go with sriracha sauce as a way to entice fans of the flavor into the Golden Arches. This time, McD’s may have a winner. Millennials love McNuggets, especially after the changes McDonald’s has been making in taste and quality in recent years.

But that doesn’t mean everything is right in the world of Mickey D’s. Some people are still focused on the failure of the sriracha burger. The company tried to launch it big, with a call out article in Inc. Magazine. Maybe it was the headline, and maybe it was the nature of Twitter, but the article triggered endless jokes at the expense of the brand and the sandwich.

The article was titled: “McDonald’s Just Rolled Out Radical New Burgers With Millennials’ Favorite Ingredient.”

Millennials, at least on Twitter were not amused. Though some did take some amusement at their expense. Twitter erupted with replies that listed things Millennials actually wanted … some more serious than others. Entries included “Universal Healthcare” and “Adderall.”

The furor continued right up to the point when The Washington Post actually sent their foodie to review the burger. Here’s what Tim Carman said: “[The sriracha-and-kale combo smacks of desperation… It reeks of a corporate attempt to capitalize on two of the biggest food trends of the past decade (although far after each has peaked). It’s the fast-food equivalent of watching your Dad sport rompers and pledge his undying love for Drake…”

Ouch.

Now, bringing rompers and Drake into the equation may have been a bridge too far, but it definitely encapsulated the impression many Millennials had about the sandwich. Despite the fabled Millennial love for kale, most agree it has no place on a fast food burger. The sauce, on the other hand, could be a difference maker.

McDonald’s has to get on the other side of the burger debacle and put more messaging into its dipping sauce. Chicken and sriracha could win a place in many Millennial hearts

Ronn Torossian
Ronn Torossian
5WPR CEO and Founderof the Ronn Torossian Foundation, Ronn Torossian was born August 25th, 1974 in Brooklyn, NY. Torossian has grown his PR Agency, 5W Public Relations, into a top 25 United States PR Firm. A life long New Yorker, Ronn currently resides with his children on the Upper West Side of New York City. Author of best selling PR Book "For Immediate Release" , you can find regular contributions of Ronn's writing on the Huffington Post, Business insider, Fox News, Everything-PR, the Observer, Wired Insights and many other publications.
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