McDonald’s Australia’s Terrible 2-hour Facebook Stream to Announce the McSpicy

Possibly one of the worst social media fails I’ve ever seen

mcdonalds australia mcspicy reveal

I can’t believe I just watched a 2-hour Facebook stream by McDonald’s Australia. Yep, the whole thing. I had no idea it would last for two hours and I feel dumb for waiting it out. Whilst I mostly work in SEO rather than all aspects of digital marketing like I have in the past, I always find any kind of online publicity stunt interesting. I’d never seen a live video like this on Facebook either, full of animated text. Since I have a marketing blog I felt like it was my duty to watch the whole stream just so I could write about it. I did not know it would take 2 hours and do kind of want my evening back.

You can view the original video here.

What’s in the box? Wanna know what’s in the box? Every time someone hits share, the box will open up a little more! So share this post to unveil our brand new menu.

Since the comments section was so entertaining, I took screenshots as it played out. What a wild ride. Overall though, I think this stream was a terrible trainwreck. I suspect they started this hoping to get thousands of shares and it backfired, forcing them to drag it out for two hours.

Here’s a summary of the angry comments section. The comments section is what really kept me going through this. These are not in the exact chronological order, but slowly tell the story of how McDonald’s Australia angered, frustrated and wasted the time of thousands of their fans on a Tuesday night during COVID-19 lockdown.

For some reason, there was a 5-minute timer at the start. This seemed so innocent and was pretty boring. We all thought we’d wait 5 minutes and see what the new burger is. That seems reasonable. Sure, why not.

Ahmad Ali Dib

So within 30 seconds of the timer starting, this guy and others started saying it’s the McSpicy burger. I wish I’d just assumed they were right and tuned out at this point.

share to reveal our new menu item

At this point, they hit 3.5K viewers and start asking everyone to share to reveal the menu item. What was that countdown for?

5 minutes of my life i'll never get back

Penelope Jane, this has only just begun.

what a waste of time

If Michael Sfikas thinks 5 minutes is a waste time… oh boy. McDonald’s Australia’s Facebook hasn’t even started.

so you're telling me

Yeah they are… but after 2 hours.

not going to share until i see what it is

I didn’t share it either.

$10 bet

Everyone was definitely wasting their time, but I’ll take the $10 Melissa.

pregnancy tests take shorter amount of time

By the end of this, I felt like pregnancies take a shorter amount of time.

penrith high street mcdonalds drive thru

There were a lot of jokes like this. So many slow McDonald’s drive-thrus in Australia, and I guess the whole world.

stop being a gronk“Stop being a gronk”.

mcdonalds ice cream machine joke

People don’t l like jumping through hoops for something so trivial.

fire mcdonalds marketing

A lot of people were asking for the person responsible to be fired. This wasn’t even an hour in.

they had 5k viewers

This was starting to get funny. They peaked at 5K in the first 25 minutes and then it started to plummet. People were getting really annoyed and leaving.

this video gave me cancer

People making cancer jokes they’re so mad.

the awkward moment

People started to enjoy watching this go terribly wrong.

report mcdonalds for spam

It’s not good when people want to report your campaign as spam.

phones on 1 percent

My phone almost went flat streaming this.

do not share they lied

Lots of people were calling them liars. Not a great look.

the last mcdoanlds burger in iceland

There was constant angry reacts being spammed through this. In terms of overall metrics, angry was most popular, getting over 600 of them. This is not something to aspire to.

worst promotional reveal ever

I really wonder if this is the type of reaction they were going for.

burger in lockdown like dan andrews victorians

Shoutout to my fellow Victorians in COVID-19 lockdown.

big jack

There were a lot of people threatening to get something from Hungry Jack’s (Australian Burger King, which currently has their own Big Mac parody burger), KFC and Red Rooster.

paint dry

Your live streams should NOT be worse than watching paint dry.

this is very bad marketing mcdonalds

And that’s why this is on the Good/Bad Marketing blog.

it will never open

Why are McDonald’s ice cream machines always broken anyway? Cleaning cycles I hope.

you've lost 4,000 viewers

Losing 4000 viewers on your stream is appalling.

opening the mcspicy

By the time they started opening the box, they dropped to under 1,000 viewers. I think this was about an hour into it. This is after peaking at over 5,000.

pathetic grab

People thought hitting 1,000 shares would trigger it. Nope.

did someone say KFC

Your Facebook live stream should NOT put viewers to sleep.

we're getting there folks

It’s pretty clear they thought they could hit a certain number of shares. I feel bad for them.

someone from gen z running mcdonalds

Gen Z marketers are getting blamed for this flop.

want to play among us

I could have played 100 games of Among Us during this.

mcdonalds north korea

North Korea probably isn’t the first country that Australian McDonald’s wants to be compared to.

i'm bored i don't care anymore

Your live stream is not meant to bore people. Please.

might just come back later

People saying they’re going to come back later is not something to aspire to, McDonald’s Australia.

they set the bar too high

This guy knows what’s going on.

i've vacuumed my house

I cooked and ate dinner whilst waiting.

no wonder everyone is pissed

I’ve never seen so many people giving such negative feedback to such a major brand.

going to waste maccas time

Probably one of the funniest comments.

this is getting embarrassing

I’m embarrassed for McDonald’s Australia’s social media team.

more open

At this point over an hour into the video the funny comments really fizzled out as it was mostly new people joining who didn’t get what was going on. Most of the original viewers were long gone.

what else will be on our new menu

It took about 10 minutes between each frame of the box opening up. This would have been about 1 hour 45 minutes into it.

this music > triple j hottest 100

At least people liked the music.


this music

You’d think their final reveal would have got more than 12 reactions in the 10 minutes after so many thousands of people viewed and shared the video. If more people saw it they’d probably have corrected “Parmi” to “Parma”.

final stats

I wonder what their target was for shares. The above stats are taken soon after it ended.

mcdonalds social media fail

Ultimately, McDonald’s is such a big brand, this little social media flop isn’t going to hurt them in the long run. They are so convenient and popular even those who were annoyed by this will be over it by the next time they’re hungry.

The real takeaway here is to set realistic goals and targets for metrics if you are holding out a reveal on a live stream. If you can’t hit those numbers, just reveal anyway before everyone leaves.

What do you think?

Written by Keith Nallawalla

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