Monday, February 04, 2013

McDonald's and their Purchase of Hockey for Canadian 9-10 Year Olds

Thanks to blog reader "J" who sent this my way.

It's atoMc hockey and in the tradition of Hockey Canada selling access to your children (something I blogged about a few months ago), comes McDonald's atoMc hockey.

What do your little bundles of targeting marketing get from McDonald's?

Free hockey jerseys and toques, McDonald's coupons for teams (that almost certainly will be used to reinforce the notion of fast food as a deserved reward for exercise and/or for celebration), a "Golden Moment" jersey, and "more".

Oh, and if you want other corporate logos festooned on your children's jersey, no problem, but no competing sponsors (no other fast food) and,
"The atoMc Hockey, Hockey Canada or Golden Arches logos cannot be obstructed by any other logos"
McDonald's also has 3 hockey superstars helping to hammer home how great they are into your children's young hearts and minds.

Truly brilliant marketing for McDonald's as it ties the incredibly powerful emotions of sport, competition, victory, camaraderie and joy to their restaurants in the minds of 9-10 year olds. How better to foster lifelong brand loyalty, and all for the cost of a jersey.

Guessing too - if your kid happens to be on a team where the coach has decided to apply to join the program, your only recourse if you don't want them exposed or involved is to pull them from the sport. Because of course parents can always "just" say "no".

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  1. Anonymous3:48 pm

    And all this time I thought that teaching your kids the importance of self-control and limiting indulgences was important, when all the long it was McDonald's fault that fat people eat too much.

    I agree that their food is very high is everything that's bad for you. At the same time, if you only eat it once in a blue moon and usually eat a well balanced diet, it's not much worse than any other restaurant out there, particularly if you compare with other fast food restaurants.

    I'm not usually one to defend corporations, but McDonald's always seems to get the bad rep for an entire industry.

    At the end of the day, they are doing a lot to sponsor sports and are a pioneer IN THEIR FAST FOOD INDUSTRY for introducing many healthier options to their menus.

    What the hell is Burger King doing? Harvey's? Wendy's? That's right, they serve the same kind of unhealthy food, but don't reinvest a penny in education or sports.

    And if you find it despicable that McDonald's is sponsoring children, then why don't you ask a chain of healthy food providers to take the torch instead of attacking those who are supporting a critically underfunded amateur sports scene? Because they won't, that's why...

    1. It's amazing to think kids ever played at all before McDonald's and their kin started bankrolling us.

      Whatever would we do without them?

    2. Anonymous1:27 pm

      Yeah, it's so much easier to be cynical than to address questions/issues like the role of parents, or just sponsorships in general.

      Let me give it a try, since we can't have a real discussion.

      You sound like a very closed minded individual, and all those who oppose your point of view must be wrong. In fact, they are surely just pawns, idolizing our corporate overlords.
      In the land of the blind, the clown is king! "Long live King Ronald!"
      Don't worry comrade, the proletariat will soon rise! Please...

      On a much less cynical point, I have to agree with the comment below. Whatever the name on the jersey, if they can help pay for hockey, than so be it.
      Of course the companies paying this money don't just do it out of the kindness of their hearts. They stand to gain new clients. But the fact remains that you just can't look anywhere without seeing advertising these days.

      Does it make it right? Probably not. But if some of the advertising dollars can be spent on helping kids play hockey rather than just benefiting Bell/Rogers/Shaw/Quebecor shareholders, then how is that a bad thing?

      As for fast food: we get it, you hate it. It's really bad for you and that's a fact.

      But as much as you hate it, and as bad as it is for people who abuse it, THEY ARE FREE TO DO SO, whether you like it or not.

      So please, get off the cross, use the wood to start a fire with which you can boil some lovely beets to make a very healthy salad, enjoy it with a green tea, and please respect other people's life choices.

      "One persons freedom ends where another persons freedom begins"

  2. Anonymous8:17 pm

    Just for a different perspective, my 10-year old's team is sponsored by AtoMc. It truly hasn't done anything to increase our consumption of McDonald's. It is just a sponsor on a jersey, like Tim Hortons for Timbits hockey. In our case, and I'm almost 100% sure for everyone else on his team, hockey is about hockey, truly and simply. When he was a Timbit, he was a "Timbit hockey player" - we didn't start going to Timmies more, nor did he ask for timbits. We haven't received any coupons from McDonalds (not sure if our coaches have chosen not to give them to us). They just want to play hockey, no matter who the sponsor is.

    1. There is another different perspective. Maybe parents should just get out of kids sports altogether. Would that bring back neighbourhood games, organized by kids themselves? Maybe only in the event of a longish power outage. Hopefully, a dad might get asked to play goal if they're a little short. This is not romance, its the way it was.

    2. Anonymous2:52 pm

      @ Anonymous 8:17 pm. I agree. One of my 3 young hockey players played in house league with the sponsorship last year. He may be 10 but he dislikes Micky D's anyway. And while my other 2 boys think their food is "okay" - seeing my young forward in the jersey twice weekly did nothing to increase the frequency at which I patronize the joint -with or without my children . which amounts to once a year perhaps. Rather than "just say no " and "pull them from the sport" (sure take my 3 boys out of hockey which is such a huge part of their social and physically active lives - brilliant idea!) why does Dr. Freedhoff not suggest to parents to "just say no " to taking them to a fast food places more often? pull them from the sport??? obviously not a hockey or any team sport parent !!!