Select Page

Is McDonald’s breakfast all day? Seems to be the second most popular question about this menu on Google, after the obvious “is it healthy”.
It’s clear where it comes from, some people enjoy the breakfast menu more than the regular menu, others just want to be able to buy breakfast menu items occasionally.
So why won’t they make this menu all day? After all, there’s money to be made in it.

McDonald’s And The Daily Routine

mcdonalds breakfast coffee advert

We all have a morning routine for our working day. When we get up, how we commute to work, where we get our coffee on the way. McDonald’s is not on the list for most people I know.

“The Irish consumer had a very negative perception of breakfast at McDonald’s. Research
commission by McDonald’s Ireland in collaboration with Bord Bia highlighted that 72% of
respondents would not consider McDonald’s for breakfast.”

– Outsourced Insight, February 2010

To deal with this problem Mcdonald’s ran a campaign that was supposed to improve their image and boost morning sales. The goal was achieved, but not because they introduced a healthier McMuffin or anything. McDonald’s team switched focus to coffee. Coffee was, is, and will be the morning best-seller, so it makes perfect sense.
If you want to read more about this coffee campaign – Institute of Advertising Practitioners in Ireland published a detailed case here.

All we need for this article is to agree that McDonald’s always wanted to bring more people in the morning.

The Breakfast Wars

fast food breakfast sandwiches

Fast forward to the year 2020. According to the National Restaurant Association, over half of adults said they are more likely to pick up a breakfast meal from a fast food joint, coffee shop, or restaurant on their way to work than they were two years ago.
Now McDonald’s breakfast menu doesn’t have to convince people it’s good, now it has to convince people that it’s better than whatever competitors have, and boy do they try hard:
McDonald’s trolls Wendy’s with free food amid breakfast launch.

Again, don’t care about the story and breakfast sales and whatnot, let’s just agree that there is a booming fast-food breakfast market.

Why McDonald’s Breakfast Only Makes Sense In The Morning

Because it’s breakfast.

Wish I could just end it there, but here comes the explanation.

McDonald’s cares about the breakfast menu, they invest significant resources in promoting it, and by making the breakfast menu available all day they will not achieve anything but, here’s why.

All day breakfast is not breakfast

If they make this menu available all day it will not take long for consumers to change how they perceive items on that menu. After all, McMuffin is just a burger.
If that happens there is no breakfast at McDonald’s anymore, it’s just burgers and fried potatoes.

Fear of missing out is a thing

Why would I go to McDonald’s in the morning if I can go there anytime?

McDonald’s and other fast-food chains invest a ton of resources trying to bring more people to their restaurants in the morning and the breakfast menu is not there to feed you, it’s there to give you an excuse to visit a fast-food joint in the morning.

McDonald’s is also no stranger to Guerrilla Marketing.