"Men, it has been well said, think in herds; it will be seen that they go mad in herds, while they only recover their senses slowly, and one by one." - Charles Mackay
Friday, April 15, 2005
Yo who wants beef
Anthropologist Sends McDonald's "Big Mac" Hip-Hop Campaign To "Cold Shower"

WASHINGTON -- Kathleen Rand Reed, a California and Washington, DC-based applied anthropologist and ethnomarketer reacted to the new marketing plan by McDonald’s to recruit hip-hop artists to plug Big Macs in their song lyrics. Reed commented, “ I don’t know whose idea this was but it shows the importance of understanding culture and language, before jumping out into the marketplace. The problem with this campaign is that in street parlance a "Big Mac," or "beef" means penis.”

McDonald’s Corporation hired entertainment-marketing firm Maven Strategies, of Lanham, MD to integrate the Big Mac brand and the hip-hop artists with upcoming songs hitting the radio airwaves this summer. Ad Age reported that earlier Maven’s approach worked with rappers and famous brands such as Kanye West, Twista and Petey Pablo with Seagram’s Gin. Busta Rhymes song and product placement, "Pass the Courvoisier” increased sales for the spirits company, Allied Domecq. Rap stars 50 Cent, Snoop Dogg and Jay-Z name-drop brands such as, Dom Perignon, Lexus, Bentley, Porsche, Gucci, and Versace in their songs.

Copy of original AdAge article: www.commercialfreechildho...ldsrap.htm

The “Big Mac/Hip-Hop” campaign according to MTV News is an offshoot of McDonald’s hip-hop outreach project and the company’s 2 year-old, “I’m Lovin’ It” ad campaign trying to reach 18-to-34-year-olds. However, according to Reed, “Liquor, cars, leathergoods, and fashions are not culturally embedded as deeply in this society as items such as food, body parts, and religion.”

Reed had to learn the hip-hop language when she conducted research on teenagers, prisons and genetics. In her report, U.S. Prison Policies, the “Baby Daddy,” and Genetics in the ‘Hood, she looked at how the removal and incarceration of young, Black males from inner-city neighborhoods affected the number of young men that were available as partners to young women. With so many men locked up, there was a limited supply of eligible men to be fathers and they often had a number of children in these communities with different mothers. Reed’s concern was the downstream genetic consequences of children not knowing the identities of their half-brothers and half-sisters.

As she presented this information to her scientific colleagues, she had to explain terms like, the “Baby Daddy,” and “Mama Drama.” Reed says that many of the young woman and young men she talked to referred to a penis as his “Big Mac” or “beef.” When she went out on the Internet, she was amazed at the number of branded euphemisms for sex and body parts.

The reference to penis enlargement surgery is called, "Supersizing Big Mac.” “There’s even a song lamenting the diminutive size of a ‘member’, sung to the tune of Gloria Gaylord’s, I Will Survive, that has as lyrics: ‘I was ready for a Big Mac and you've brought me a French fry,’ “ Reed says.

Advertising and marketing firms have long run into trouble with “cultural translations

Pizza Hut named a new calzone dish the P'Zone. But it was pronounced like "pezón", the Spanish word for "nipple". Hunt-Wesson introduced in French Canada its Big John products as Gros Jos, and then it was revealed that the phrase, in slang, means "big breasts". The Dairy Association's "Got Milk?" campaign expanded into Mexico, only to find out that the Spanish translation read, "Are you lactating?"

Given the number of immigrants currently now in the U.S. with various religious affiliations, ad and marketing firms need cultural consultants at their sides. Nike’s "flaming air" logo for its Nike Air sneakers offended Muslims because it looked too similar to the Arabic form of God's name, "Allah". Nike pulled more than 38,000 pairs of sneakers from the market.

Reed points out that often rap lyrics are so violent; the association of product to song is not in the best interest of any corporation. For instance, in Kool G. Rap & DJ Polo’s Take ’em to War lyrics, they refer to another hamburger outlet, White Castle--"You got beef? Go get yourself a wreath, because it’s murder. Cause I put holes in my beef like f******’ white castle burgers...” Reed says, “ Advertisers can no longer look at demographics like age and gender. Neither can they use loaded expressions like, “urban” or “inner-city,” which is sometimes code for a broad brush group called Black or Latino. They also can’t hire minority companies as intermediaries and access to these communities and their culture and language. Advertisers will have to spend qualitative time learning the intimacies of meaning---In short, they will have to “get down,” to “get up”.

I wonder what all of the sudden negative buzz is about. They have been using hip hop to sell everything from Old Navy Sweaters to Burger King burgers for year nows at this point Ronald should be able to come in and make everyone into a clown.

I also wonder sometimes after seeing all this needless stupid black economic marketing is this what Booker T Washington thought was going to happen, when he use to push for Negro economic equality with whites. That we would be exploited for our ignorance as well
- R J Noriega
posted by R J Noriega at 3:11 PM | Permalink |


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