This blog has talked considerably about the natural tension that exists between transparency and message control. Can the two live side by side, or does transparency actually impair an enterprise’s ability to advocate its point of view? Furthermore, can opening the curtain to expose one’s warts, actually produce a reputational (and ultimately) financial benefit?
Yesterday, McDonalds held a news conference to announce that it would add nutritional information to its menu item wrappers. (Heretofore, that information only was available on its website and in-store brochures.) It follows the QSR’s efforts to re-make Ronald McDonald into a fitness advocate, and the industry’s efforts to blunt the criticism of its role in the obesity epidemic..
This is a bold, and some may think risky move, considering the quantity of fat and calories contained in a typical Big Mac. Nonetheless, I suspect most patrons of McDonalds won’t even read the wrappers, and Micky D’s gets a big PR boost for its open and honest approach.