Q.: Evaluate Lisa Aham’s current strategy regarding senior citizens. Does this strategy improve this McDonald’s image? What should she do about the senioor citizen market – that is, should she encourage, ignore, or discourage her seniors? What should she do about the bingo idea? Explain.
McDonald’s “Seniors” Retaurant
Lisa Aham is manager of a McDonald’s restaurant in a city with many “seniors.” She has noticed that some senior citizens have become not just regular patrons – but patrons who come for breakfast and stay on until about 3 PM. Many of these older customers were attracted initially by a monthly breakfast special for people aged 55 and older. The meal costs $1.99, and refills of coffee are free. Every fourth Monday, between 100 and 150 seniors jam Lisa’s McDonald’s for the special offer. But now almost as many of them are coming every day – turning the fast-food restaurant into a meeting place. They sit for hours with a cup of coffee, chatting with friends. On most days, as many as 100 will stay from one to four hours.
Lisa’s employees have been very friendly to the seniors, calling them by their first names and visiting with them each day. In fact, Lisa’s McDonald’s is a happy place – with her employees developing close relationships with the seniors. Some employees have even visited customers who have been hospitalized. “You know,” Lisa says, “I really get attached to the customers. They’re like my family. I really care about these people.” They are all “friends” and being friendly with the customers is a part of McDonald’s corporate philosophy.
These older customers are an orderly group – and very friendly to anyone who comes in. Further, they are neater than most customers, and carefully clean up their tables when they leave. Nevertheless, Lisa is beginning to wonder if anything should be done about her growing “nonfast-food” clientele. There’s no crowding problem yet, during the time when the seniors like to come. But if the size...
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