I remember growing up when my dad was running an ad agency in
My dad’s agency even designed the McDonalds flag, which of course seems pretty simple now, but it probably took many meetings with the client and focus groups with picky consumers.
Anyway, I remember when my dad was working with one of the fast food companies, It was either Browns Chicken or Jack in the Box, and the CEO insisted that all the food in the commercials and print ads were real. They would have to run down to the local franchise and buy the food and then bring it back and try and make it look good.
As I am sure you are aware, this undertaking was a challenge, and after thousands of dollars wasted in production costs, they finally came up with something that worked for the market, while not compromising the integrity of the CEO. I think what they ended up doing was just showing a box of the food, rather than the actual cooked food.
I found this posting that someone had put together that shows the marketing version of fast food and then the actual version. You can see what my dad was up against in these photos. It is hard to be a marketer, but even harder to be a consumer.