Mini Case Write-up – Positioning Fast Food

Learning Goal: I’m working on a marketing case study and need an explanation and answer to help me learn.

Positioning Fast Food

Compare two fast food restaurant chains—Chipotle and McDonald’s (who no longer owns Chipotle). Chipotle has locations throughout the U.S., but that presence is obviously dominated by McDonald’s vast network. Chipotle is positioned as offering fresh food, made to the customer’s requests, that is relatively healthy. The company rarely advertises. In contrast, McDonald’s brand associations revolve more around convenience, inexpensive food,

and given their advertising, family outings. These brands appeal to their customers with very different philosophies. Indeed, on the surface, they appear to have little in common, other than their sector.

Case Discussion Questions

1. Characterize these companies’ positions in the marketplace from your best estimates as to the customers’

perceptions. In which cell does each exist in the positioning matrix?

2. Would the two chains see each other as competitive threats?

3. What could either do to make its business (profitability) even stronger?

Provide at least 5 referecens

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