McDonald’s World Cup ‘Gol!’: Art Packs, Game App & Viral

McDonald’s has kicked off its global World Cup activation with its first ever French Fry packaging redesign which links to a branded augmented realty trick-shot app.


Late may saw the fast food giant swap its well known and widely recognised red French fry packs with fresh Brazilian-inspired artwork developed from an exclusive collection of original Brazilian street art produced to a brief based around reflecting the beauty and passion of the game.


The brand worked with 12 artists from around the world to create the designs:


  • Australia: David Spencer ‘s ‘The Perfect Kick’
  • Brazil: Eduardo Kobra’s ‘The world united by football’
  • Canada: Mügluc’s ‘Unite Together’
  • China: Hua Tunan’s ‘World of Victory’
  • England: Ben Mosley’s ‘Fans of the World’
  • France: Skwak’s ‘The Maniac Football Party’
  • Germany: Roman Klonek’s ‘Freaky Fan Club’
  • Japan: Doppel’s ‘Kick the One’
  • Russia: Egor Koshelev’s ‘The Perfect Goal’
  • South Africa: Adele Bantjes’ ‘Heart of the Game’
  • Spain: Martin Satí’s ‘Flamenco Number One’
  • USA: Tes One’s ‘Formations’


These on-pack designs also act as a key to ‘unlocking’ the brand’s gaming app which challenges customers to compete in a global soccer trick-shot competition – called ‘McDonald’s GOL!’


Customers with a World Cup designed chip box can download the app by simply holding the screen of their mobile phone up to the front of the box.


The device then recognises the artwork and a football pitch appears on screen in an AR scene with the fry box as the goal and other built-in objects as obstacles to shoot past.


The objective is to kick the ball by flicking a finger across the screen and to divert/use obstacles in order to get the ball into the goal.



To promote this global FIFA 2014 World Cup activation, McDonald’s is running several activities (from advertising, a microsite and social media, to point of sale work and menu promotions) led by a soccer trick-shot spot featuring an array of talented players from around the world showing off their soccer skills in unlikely and mischievous places.



The online ad, which generated 35,000+ views in its first week, drives viewers to download the gaming app itself.


The McDonald’s GOL! App is compatible with both Android and Apple devices and can be downloaded from the Google Play store and Apple App Store from 26 May.


The art design work was led by The Marketing Store, while agency DDB Chicago helped conceptualise using art as an app trigger alongside tech partners Qualcomm and Trigger.


The game was created for McDonald’s in collaboration Qualcomm’s Vuforia mobile-vision platform and Trigger.


McDonald’s is also running local marketing activities too – typically with a ticket giveaway promotion as the central strand of the country-specific campaigns.


For example, a US TV spot running through Brazil 2014 and leveraging the World Cup as its principle theme, sees the fast food giant explores identity confusion, immigration legacies and cross-generational tensions.


The commercial, called ‘House Divided’, focuses on a joint Mexican-American household as it imagines the two nations meeting in a World Cup match.





This focus on mobile follows McDonald’s recent launch of a mobile coupon app and a click-and-collect service as it seeks to win back younger customers who have moved to more mobile-savvy rivals such as Subway and Nando’s.


Indeed, according to McDonald’s chief digital officer Atif Rafiq, the aim of the initiative is to bring fun and convenience to customers’ lives.


‘Our digital vision at McDonald’s is to bring an entirely new level of everyday convenience and fun to the world, and our Augmented Reality app is just one example of how we are bringing fun to our customers’ lives,’ adds Rafiq.


Another example of this strategic approach in April saw McDonald’s link with eReading provider Kobo and publisher Hodder to offer Happy Meal buyers access to free ‘Secret Seven’ digital books.


See www.kobobooks.com/uk/happyreaders


‘We are very excited about the numerous opportunities in front of us to bring even more innovative digital experiences to our customers in ways only McDonald’s can do.’


This objective is shared by McDonald’s SEVP and Global Chief Brand Officer Steve Easterbrook.


‘This is about bringing fun, innovative programming to our customers and celebrating our shared love of football. We’re excited to be able to do that through an engaging, interactive mobile experience.’


Internally, the fresh fries packaging is a big move for McDonald’s as it marks the first time in brand history it’s changed the packaging design of its customers’ favourite global menu items.


‘What better reason [for the first ever packaging change] than to share in the excitement of one of the most prestigious sporting events in the world?’ says Easterbrook.


McDonald’s has been an Official Sponsor and the Official Restaurant of the FIFA World Cup for the last 20 years and, in addition to its global ‘Gol!’ campaign is running a number of other initiatives activating its rights – including:


McDonald’s Player Escorts:
McDonald’s ongoing programme will provide 1,408 kids from 69 countries worldwide a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to experience the thrill of the Tournament and walk hand-in-hand onto the pitch with their football heroes.


McDonald’s Ultimate FIFA World Cup Football Fan:
McDonald’s will bring together some of the most passionate fans from around the world with the ‘ultimate trip to the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Customers selected as a McDonald’s Ultimate FIFA World Cup Futbol Fan will have the opportunity to attend matches, have their photo taken with the FIFA World Cup Trophy, have VIP treatment at exclusive parties during Tournament and more. Each market determines the criteria and selection process for their selected fans.




McDonald’s Gol App



McDonald’s Gol! Trailer YouTube



McDonald’s Goal App YouTube



The Marketing Store



Vuforia Website



Trigger Website



Featured Showcases