The McLobster, McHotdog, and other McFailures

Fishy Fishay

Everyone is familiar with McDonalds most recent marketing ploy most likely due to the jingle they released that accompanies an aggressive marketing campaign.

If you need a reminder here is an example. We wish you luck in relating to these kids.

Fish McBites are this years new menu item. They are reminiscent of last years Chicken McBites if you are really paying attention. Brian Irwin, director of marketing for McDonald’s USA said “Fish McBites would work well because there is a fun, poppable aspect to them”. They are even putting them in happy meals now. Despite the enthusiasm of McDonalds corporate officers, McDonald’s sales decreased 3.3% this past February. This is a rare drop for this mega company.

How Mega?

McDonalds is one of the most popular and profitable companies in the entire world. This past year they ranked 410th on the Fortune 500 rankings making them the 410th largest company in the world. However, their brand is ranked 7th on a Forbes Brand Strength list. This basically means that the majority of people in the world know more than just a little about McDonald’s, rather they are very familiar with their history.

What They Aren’t Advertising. The McLobster… Really?

Unfortunately yes. The McLobster is frozen lobster meat stuffed into a hotdog bun with a lobster targeted “special sauce” and some shredded lettuce. I won’t make you wait any longer. Here it is.


It was released for the price of $5.99 per sandwich. That’s more than most foot longs from Subway. As undesirable as this thing looks, it is actually available in parts of New England and Canada right now. Road trip anyone?


What Else?

The McGratin Croquette, a fried macaroni, shrimp and mashed potato sandwich made for the Japanese Market. McGratin Croquette

The McPizza, a made to order pizza designed to compete with Pizza Hut and Domino’s.

Pizza & McPizza

The McSpaghetti. Not much to say about this one other than how starkly it alludes back to school cafeteria days.


The McAfrika, a beef, cheese, tomato, and entire salad, all inside of a pita. It was released in 2002 during a major famine in Africa. A PR crisis occurred and the item was pulled until 2008, during the Beijing Olympics.


The McHotdog. The most promising of these.


The Common Factor: Branding

The main reason all of these failed has nothing to do with marketing fast food shellfish and salad sandwiches in particular. Even a simple hot dog failed as miserably as the McAfrika because people were not able to associate these new items with the idea of McDonalds as a place to buy hamburgers and chicken nuggets. Basically, McDonalds has branded themselves to death, or at least to a Big Mac ceiling. Here’s to hoping they don’t find a way out of it soon.

What do you think. Would you eat any of these items?


3 responses to “The McLobster, McHotdog, and other McFailures

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