Mickey D’s CEO Don Thompson recently faced off with members of Corporate Accountability International and children likely prepped by the consumer group. Additionally, Michelle Dyre knocked Thompson with the following:
“CEO Thompson, when is McDonald’s going to stop its aggressive marketing to communities of color? Especially outrageous is McDonald’s targeting children of color. Children of color are already more likely to live in environments where healthy food is less available. That they are more likely to develop diet-related diseases than their white counterparts should be no surprise considering how McDonald’s overwhelmingly targets them with predatory marketing.”
Ms. Dyre is on target with the commentary regarding the health issues facing minority kids. However, the charges of “aggressive marketing to communities of color” are arguably overblown. While Mickey D’s is among the few advertisers actively engaged in multicultural marketing, the fast feeder is still offering McCrumbs to minority advertising agencies—especially compared to the piles of loot handed to White agencies to peddle menu items.
It would have been more appropriate to ask Thompson when Mickey D’s is going to start aggressive marketing to communities of color. When will minority audiences receive their fair share of marketing dollars? When will major advertisers begin treating minority advertising agencies with equal respect—and stop forcing the shops to produce stereotype-riddled messages? Will Mickey D’s ever weigh in on the dearth of diversity on Madison Avenue? These key questions point to the especially outrageous conditions in the advertising industry.