McDonald’s Indonesia: McDonald’s Indonesia Celebrates National Heroes with Toys


Campaign Summary

McDonald's Indonesia's campaign aimed to strengthen its connection with families and celebrate the nation's heroes by introducing the "McDonald's Pahlawan (Heroes) edition" toys. Recognizing the fading relevance of National Heroes Day, McDonald's leveraged the educational value of toys and storytelling to revive interest. Each toy featured a QR code that provided instructions and the hero's story, fostering family bonding and learning. The campaign successfully increased brand trust, ethical perception, and the perception of McDonald's as a brand that allows families to have fun together.



For McDonald's, COVID-19 meant closing the doors to its most powerful consumer engagement medium — the dining rooms. As a brand that has built its Indonesian presence around serving the community, this posed a challenge. To maintain local relevance and connect with consumers, McDonald's had to find a new way to stand out and be meaningful to its core audience of families.

Target Audience:

Demographic: Millennial families with young children

Psychographics: Working parents who are struggling to find time for their families due to work commitments.

Creative Strategy:

Inspired by Indonesian President lr. Soekarno's quote, "A great nation is a nation that respects the services of their heroes," McDonald's embarked on a mission.

Recognizing that today's younger generation is more familiar with Marvel and DC superheroes than their own national heroes, McDonald's aimed to revive interest in National Heroes Day. They introduced "McDonald's Pahlawan (Heroes) edition" toys that could unite a nation.

Understanding the significance of toys in the learning process, McDonald's created a special series of 3D figures in a DIY format. Each toy featured a QR code that, when scanned, provided instructions and the hero's story. To promote family togetherness, this series was bundled with a newly created Family weekend meal package.


The campaign launched on National Heroes Day in November 2021 and continued into 2022 with a focus on female heroes to commemorate Hari Kartini. The success of the Heroes Edition series ensured its continuation as an annual series from McDonald's, with a stronger follow-up planned for November 2022.


Overall Campaign Execution:

To introduce the series, McDonald's conducted a thought-provoking social experiment to highlight the lack of awareness about homegrown heroes among children. QR codes were embedded on the packaging of each toy, leading to the hero's story narrated by Indonesia's leading storyteller, Kak Awam.

Leveraging the familiarity of landmarks named after heroes, McDonald's utilized Google Vision API. Scanning the names of landmarks, such as street signs, trains, or bus stations, allowed access to the hero's story, enabling families to learn together.

Mobile Execution:

Recognizing the significance of mobile phones in the education system during the pandemic, each toy came with a QR code that could be scanned using a mobile device to listen to the hero's story in audio format. Similarly, scanning landmarks allowed people to hear their stories narrated by a legendary children's storyteller.

Business Impact (including context, evaluation, and market impact)

McDonald's Pahlawan was not just an idea to drive incremental sales; it became a powerful platform for highlighting Indonesia's forgotten heroes and fostering family connections while learning about the nation's rich history.

The campaign had a significant impact on brand-building efforts, with improvements in key metrics:

  • Brand trust increased by 4 points compared to 2021.
  • Perception of the brand as ethical and responsible increased by 3 points compared to 2021.
  • The perception of the brand as one that allows kids and families to have fun together increased by 4 points compared to 2021.
  • The perception of the brand as an innovative brand increased by 5 points compared to 2021.

The initiative generated immense pride within the community, as endorsed by the Social Minister of Indonesia, and received heartfelt gratitude from the families of the heroes.

The positive sentiment was echoed by the media, resulting in a PR value of $7.2 million USD. Additionally, the campaign achieved impressive metrics on social media, including a reach of 605,200 people, 30.6 million impressions, and 2,772,353 YouTube views. Over 100,000 interactive points were created.

Categories: | Industries: | Objectives: Brand Purpose/Activism | Awards: X Finalist