I’m Lovin’ It – McDonald’s Slogans Explained!

Are you looking for a list of all McDonald slogans and the meaning of its latest slogan: I’m Lovin’ It? If yes, this article is going to explain it to you in detail.

As an entrepreneur, I’m very interested in learning about the slogans of some successful companies like McDonald. Because it inspires me to use the same kind of marketing tactic in my own business.

So in the past week, I have studied a lot of materials about McDonald slogans. I’m going to share with you my findings of the slogans. You may find it very inspirational if you are a business student or business owner.

In this article about “I’m Lovin’ It” and all other McDonald slogans, I’m going to cover the following topics:

What Was McDonald’s First Slogan?

The first McDonald’s slogan was “Look for the Golden Arches,” which appeared in 1960 as an informative and helpful advertising campaign.

This slogan conveys bright colours and cleanliness, making it easy to recognize a McDonald’s restaurant soon after the Golden Arches are trademarked.

Through the years, McDonald’s has had a number of memorable slogans and taglines, both good and bad.

What Does “I’m Lovin’ It” Mean?

McDonald’s current slogan “I’m Lovin’ It” has been around since 2003, which is the longest time a McDonald’s slogan has remained unchanged.

A troubled McDonald’s held an international ad agency competition in early 2003, including the industry’s largest. According to The Wall Street Journal, the winning firm, Heye & Partner-though affiliated with a big company-was a “tiny” shop based in the quiet Munich suburb of Unterhaching, Germany. 

The idea: “Ich liebe es,” which means “I love it.” In recognition of its role, McDonald’s debuted the campaign in Germany in September.

It doesn’t appear that the slogan will change anytime soon as it has become one of the most recognized slogans worldwide and was intended to be a universal tagline.

The slogan appears on nearly every McDonald’s product and packaging, which makes it seem like it will be around for a long time.

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How Was The “I’m Lovin’ It” Slogan Created?

McDonald’s first changed their slogan to “I’m Lovin’ It” back in 2003, but the search for a new slogan started in 2001 when sales were lagging and they were looking to revamp their brand and image.

McDonald’s held an advertising agency competition worldwide in 2001 to come up with a new slogan that would be a global tagline that would appeal to consumers.

German advertising agency Heine & Partner won with their submission of “I’m Lovin’ It” and the five notes they created for the music.

McDonald’s also hired renowned jingle writer Butch Stewart to create a melody for the winning tune, then hired Pharrell Williams to write a pop song with the phrase.

Both Timberlake and McDonald’s made huge profits from the song Williams penned, which was performed by Justin Timberlake for $6 million.

How Did “I’m Lovin’ It” Campaigns Work?

Hip-hop, specifically, was part of the package from the start. Heye worked with German recording company Mona Davis Music. 

During a 2004 interview with Adweek, Mona Davis president Tom Batoy said he got the idea for “ba da ba ba ba,” the campaign’s “audio logo,” after hearing an unidentified backup vocalist sing it in the studio. At the time, he said, “Everybody remembers it.”.

McDonald’s spent $1.37 billion on advertising the year of “I’m Lovin’ It,” so it makes sense that many people contributed. Mona Davis is credited with leading “music development” at McDonald’s. Batoy and Franco Tortora are listed in the databases of ASCAP, BMI, and SESAC as songwriters for the myriad versions of “I’m Lovin’ It.”

The jingle “I’m Lovin’ It” wasn’t your ordinary advertisement. Pharrell Williams, Batoy, Tortora, Heye’s Andreas Forberger, and Timberlake credited it as a full-fledged Timberlake song. 

In August 2003, MTV News reported “I’m Lovin’ It” had been scheduled for the former ‘NSYNC leader’s second solo album, but “since it’s already leaked to radio and the internet, he’ll release it this fall.” 

The Neptunes, the duo of Pharrell and Chad Hugo, produced and directed the video. Paul Hunter was also in charge of the visuals for Timberlake’s 2002 LP Justified’s single Se*orita. Belgium’s I’m Lovin’ It EP hit No. 1 with three songs. 

Steve Stoute, who introduced McDonald’s to Timberlake, calls this process “reverse engineering,” in which the message of a brand is first put in a pop-culture form unrelated to the brand. 

Stoute explains this step-by-step in his 2011 book The Tanning of America: “Commission an iconic artist to perform your song; promote it throughout your campaign; and at the same time, promote the marketing slogan.” Just like a movie.

It is interesting to note that Timberlake released his 2016 chart-topper, Troll’s soundtrack selection “Can’t Stop the Feeling!” several months before the movie is released.

McDonald’s launched “I’m Lovin’ It” with five commercials. At times, they were tailored for specific regions and translated into 11 languages. 

McDonald’s announced in September 2003 that its commercials in the U.S. would feature cameo appearances and vocals from Timberlake, production from the Neptunes, and rapping from Clipse, Pusha T’s duo with brother No Malice (then simply Malice).

Apparently, Pusha wrote the jingle as well. In an interview last month, Steve Stoute—the executive who introduced JT to McDonald’s—told Hot 97’s Ebro Darden that it was crazy that Pusha T wrote the song. 

It’s definitely tasty to see a rapper who is known for his vivid wordplay about moving drugs being just as skilled at hawking cheeseburgers.

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McDonald Slogans From 1961 to 2017

Doesn’t it seem like there’s a McDonald’s everywhere? You’re right, there are. Over the years, McDonald’s has launched many great advertising campaigns.  Here is a look back at McDonald’s slogans since 1961:

  • 1961 – Look for the Golden Arches
  • 1967 – McDonald’s is your kind of place
  • 1971 – You deserve a break today
  • 1975 – We do it all for you
  • 1975 – Two all-beef patties special sauce lettuce, cheese pickles onions on a sesame seed bun – This was never an official company slogan
  • 1976 – You, you’re the one
  • 1977 – You’ll enjoy the difference – In the UK
  • 1979 – Nobody can do it like McDonald’s can
  • 1980 – You deserve a break today
  • Early 1980s – At McDonald’s we’ve got time for you – the United Kingdom
  • 1981 – Nobody makes your day like McDonald’s can
  • 1983 – McDonald’s and you
  • 1984 – It’s a good time for the great taste of McDonald’s
  • 1985 – It’s Mac Tonight
  • 1988 – Good time, great taste (that’s why this is our place)
  • The late 1980s – There’s nothing quite like a McDonald’s
  • 1990 – Food, folks and fun
  • 1991 – McDonald’s today – The entire jingle was “What you want is what you get at McDonald’s today.”
  • 1992 – It’s Mac time – Australia only
  • 1992 – What you want is what you get
  • 1993 – There’s nothing quite like a McDonald’s – the United Kingdom
  • 1993 – Do you believe in magic?
  • 1994 – Make every day a McDonald’s day – South Africa only
  • 1994 – Rock On – Australia only? Featured David Essex’ song “Rock On”
  • 1995 – Have you had your break today?
  • 1997 – My McDonald’s
  • 1997 – Did somebody say McDonald’s?
  • 1997 – Enjoy more – the United Kingdom
  • 1998 – Only McDonald’s – Australia only
  • 1990s – A visit to McDonald’s makes your day – United KingdomThe 
  • 1990s – McDonald’s – It can happen – United States
  • 1990s – Eddie the Echo – How ya doin’? How ya doin’? – the United States
  • 2000 – We love to see/make you smile
  • 2000 – Put a smile on
  • 2001 – There’s a little McDonald’s in everyone – Canada only
  • 2001 – Things that make you go ‘mmm’ – Australia, UK and New Zealand
  • 2002 – Every time a good time
  • 2002 – We love to see you smile
  • 2003 – me encanta – The Justin Timberlake slogan song
  • 2003 – I’m lovin’ it – The Justin Timberlake slogan song
  • 2005 – Feed your inner child – An advertisement shown in Australia showed various adults in suspended animation, and having child versions coming out of them
  • 2007 – Things that make you go ‘mmm’ – Breakfast us
  • 2015 – The Simpler the Better (attempted to trademark it in 2016)
  • 2016 – Lovin’ Beats Hatin’ (was not well received)
  • 2017 – I’m Lovin’ It

Why Is the Business Slogan Important For McDonald?

Adverts often use slogans because they are short and catchy. A catchy slogan can attract attention to a brand or product. 

Slogans have been around for a long time, but today they are everywhere, and they are used by many different brands. 

Slogans should highlight a product’s benefits. Memorable slogans will also enhance a brand’s image. 

It is generally believed that a phrase with meaning resonates more strongly with customers than a brand’s name alone, as a good slogan provides more than an assurance of commitment, but also explains what the brand stands for.

In marketing, slogans are important for the following reasons:

Brand positioning and recognition

A distinctive logo, a memorable slogan, and the brand name determine a company’s identity. 

Therefore, a catchy and memorable slogan will help your brand gain recognition. Your brand’s position in the market will depend on the tone and language of your slogan.

Building better customer relationships

Throughout history, slogans have always served as a connection between a business and its clients.

Using slogans in advertising helps brands to be remembered by their audiences, which results in a positive attitude towards them.

Stand out from the crowd

It is important for a brand’s slogan to be distinctive. This will help you stand out from the crowd. 

Your brand can be identified without having to mention the product or brand name if you mention the slogan. 

“I’m lovin it” brings to mind McDonalds almost instantly.

Make your product more popular

In addition to telling the audience about the product, a slogan can also inform them of its benefits. 

Slogans describe how people view a product. You can use a slogan to enhance the appeal of your product as a marketing strategy.

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Final Words: McDonald’s Slogans

McDonald’s has had a number of memorable slogans over the years. The current “I’m Lovin’ It” is the longest-running McDonald’s slogan in history.

All these years later, the slogans “You Deserve a Break Today” and “We Love to See You Smile” remain two of the most recognizable slogans from McDonald’s.

After winning the advertising competition McDonald’s put out, a German agency took a couple of years to develop the McDonald’s slogan “I’m Lovin’ It.”.

Furthermore, Pharrell Williams wrote the song, and Justin Timberlake was paid to sing it, creating an economic windfall for McDonald’s and Timberlake.

The I’m Lovin’ It slogan will live on regardless of whether or not McDonald’s changes its slogan again.

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I’m Lovin’ It - McDonald’s Slogan

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