Free Coffee

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According to experts, breakfast is the most important meal of the day. However because of the current lifestyle and increasing traffic congestion, mornings are turning into a race against time thus making Costa Ricans skip this meal without taking its importance into account. Breakfast wasn’t McDonald’s highest visiting hours when compared through the rest of the day.

OMD’s main challenge was, how could it increase sales in this time frame according to the Costa Rican lifestyle? Coffee is the preferred beverage and it is customary to drink a cup each morning to have a great start! With this in mind OMD set out to define its insight: “I can’t start my day without coffee!”

The idea was to lure Costa Ricans and bring them to McDonalds’ restaurants by offering them a FREE COFFEE, all they had to do was ASK FOR IT!!!


Traffic caused a daily ordeal each day for Costa Ricans, making them spend countless hours trapped on the street, so people would skip breakfast in order to arrive on time to their destination. Waze (an app made specifically for guiding people through traffic using the best routes) has become an important ally to fight this morning chaos reaching over 800,000 out of 1,200,000 registered drivers in Costa Rica alone!!!


When users search for the best routes to arrive to their destination in the morning, McDonalds decided to tempt them to stop by for a free coffee using branded pings resembling a Coffee Cup in all of McDonalds’ restaurants locations.

The selected hours for running this campaign were in the morning when traffic is at its worst. When the car drove within the range of a McDonald’s restaurant the ping was activated inviting the user to pass by for a free coffee! This action was supported with TV, OOH, Radio and Digital for the duration of the campaign (three weeks).


Using Waze, McDonald’s managed to achieve 3,000,000 impressions, 11,500 ping clicks, 1,000,000 coupons displayed in the time the campaign lasted (15 days). This resulted in more than 20,000 coffees delivered, surpassing expectations over 300% and achieving a 5% sales increase during breakfast hours.

Thanks to this campaign McDonald’s and OMD made thousands of Costa Ricans increase their desire for a coffee, and not only that, it also encouraged them to make time for having breakfast in McDonald’s.

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Costa Rica
June - June 2013
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