Checking McDonald’s in Kingsman

Placedise is a software to automatically evaluate product placement. Therefore, we analyzed a lot of different product placement regarding their psychological advertising effectiveness over the last years. In our magazine/blog, we sometimes present some of those cases.
(Those are usually never projects of our clients due to terms of privacy.)


The Format: Kingsman

Kingsman is an Action-Comedy from 2014 – and one of the best ones in this genre in my opinion.
It is a mix of James Bond, meeting Austin Powers and MMA, when the young agent in training, Eggsy (Tarton Egerton) and Agent Galahad (Colin Firth) save the world from evil Richmond Valentine (Samuel L. Jackson). A movie full of breath-taking action and a lot of fun.

This premium environment is, of course, also playground for many brands. In the following, we will look at one in specific.


The Brand: McDonald’s

McDonald’s is a US fast food chain and one of the most valuable as well as best-known brands in the world.
After some hard times, the corporation is now on a good track to continue its past path of growth.
One of its most popular products might be the Big Mac, which is also featured within the movie.


The Product Placement

The clip shows a small part of the (little longer) integration that definitely can be called a prominent one.


Goal Assumptions

Placedise evaluates a product placement always with regards to the specific goals of the brand. Any other approach would be unprofessional, since there is no overall good or bad placement from a marketing point of view.
At the given case, we assumed that the reputation of the brand with the target audience of the movie should be optimized in the long term. We also took the current reputation as well as McDonald’s market share into account (as well as many other parameters).


The Evaluation

In our analysis, the product placement of McDonald’s in Kingsman led to a degree of goal achievement (PDGA) of 48.6 %.

This value does not only sound low – it indeed is no great one.
Nevertheless, there are no clear signs for negative reputational effects – but only looking at the placement (we did not consider other additional marketing measures), it has no positive effects either.



First of all, I want to point out that optimizing brand reputation works great with product placement (better than with most other marketing measures), but it is also way more complicated that just aiming for some attention and reach.

In this case, the very prominent integration is the reason for not making use of the positive effects and potential – said in a simple way. The brand could have done much better by placing its products in a more subtle way – e.g. without the in-your-face wrapping or less screen time. The reason why this did not lead to negative effects (e.g. damage of reputation) is not the style of the integration, but the general environment (the funny and valuable style of a movie like Kingsman). If we would look at a Drama, the whole placement would have been a disaster.

As said before, we made some assumptions for our evaluation, regarding the brand’s goals. However, even with those assumptions, one can score big as McDonald’s Germany proofed at the German blockbuster “Joy of Fatherhood” (we will talk about this another time). The integration there has been also very prominent, but a little more subtle and in a more suitable context (children birthday party). The degree of goal achievement there is 102.7 % – that is awesome. The product placement lead to a sustainable benefit for the brand’s reputation.


The detailed reports that come right out of the system:



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Jens Kuerschner

Author: Jens Kuerschner

Jens Kuerschner is founder and CEO of Placedise. As an expert in the field of consumer behavior and media enthusiast, he is especially responsible for the product know-how. In our blog, this knowledge and the experience of many years of research and study will be shared with you.

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