I'm on the road this week for a new business pitch and I stepped into McDonald's yesterday, just to get a bottle of water (honest!).
Now I have heard a lot about the McCafe offerings, and I know that McDonald's is serious about entering the coffee game. I write in my book how Starbucks has opened the door to competition, basically by eroding the brand experience and continuing high prices. I've heard and read that McDonald's is taking advantage of the opportunity -- yesterday I saw it for myself.
I have to say that I was a bit surprised when I finally went inside. The brand really does rival the coffee menu of Starbucks and Dunkin' Donuts. Certainly still not the brand experience of Starbucks (they are working at getting it better again), but at much lower price points it's hard to not let the rational side take over. Even how the brand languages its coffee sourcing and all day and night coffee options is knocking right on the door of Starbucks.
And this was just a regular McDonald's. Many high volume locations actually have built separate McCafe seating areas which makes it even more inviting. There's a spot in New York which is just all McCafe, a concept that the brand has been testing for years.
Good work, McDonald's, for giving us options in our quest for coffee. You just might see me again, this morning!
What's your experience? Jim