McDonald’s turns Piccadilly Lights site interactive

McDonald’s is relaunching its site on London’s iconic Piccadilly Lights sign with a new creative that allows passers by to interact with the brand by adding their own animated character to the screen via their mobiles.

McDonalds Piccadilly Lights
New McDonald’s Piccadilly Lights placement will allow consumers to interact with the ad via their mobiles.

The fast food chain claims its new “Little Piccadilly” site is the world’s first digital advertising screen that is “fully interactive” 365 days a year.

Visitors to the site can visit a dedicated website to choose from more than 300 million illustrated character combinations, which can be sent directly to the sign to become a “permanent resident” of Little Piccadilly, with the site acting as an “interactive visitors’ book”.

McDonald’s says the creative reflects the “democratic values” of the brand.

The creative will also reflect real-time weather conditions and will offer up “more exciting and surprising results” the more people who interact with the screen at the same time. The marketing push was developed by Leo Burnett.

In the coming months McDonald’s plans to add more character combinations to the site as well as additional functionality such as messaging and games. This is thanks to an update to the site in December allowing brands to use Clear Channel’s digital format Storm, which offers up more creative flexibility. 

Nathalie Pomroy, McDonald’s UK marketing director, says: “Little Piccadilly is the next step in McDonald’s digital journey, allowing people to interact with this iconic landmark in a unique and exciting way.”

Last year the Piccadilly Lights were extended for the first time since the hoardings were erected in 1908. 

Some two million people pass through Piccadilly Circus each week, according to owners Land Securities, with about 70 per cent of those pedestrians. McDonald’s has advertised on the sign for more than 20 years.