Tariq Hassan is the Chief Marketing and Customer Experience Officer of McDonald’s USA, leading all marketing efforts of the 14,000+ McDonald’s restaurants in the country. He joined McDonald’s after a successful career in global marketing and branding, including as Chief Marketing Officer of Petco, where he was recognized with the Adweek Brand Genius Award. Prior to that, Tariq founded the largest ad agency start-up in US history and held marketing leadership roles with HP, Omnicom Group, and Bank of America.

As the US faces rising inflation and food prices, Tariq emphasized the importance of providing value to McDonald’s customers. “Our fans have been really clear to us that that value that they’ve come to expect from McDonald’s has never frankly been more important to them,” he said in an interview with ABC News. “We’re committed to continuing to have that ability to provide our customers those kind of offers, whether it’s through our everyday value meal or unique offers we’re making through national or local promotions or exclusive offers through the app.”

Tariq is passionate about creating diverse and inclusive teams and was named an Adweek DEI Champion. He has served as the executive sponsor for Petco’s Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging (DEI&B) advisory council and LGBTQ employee resource group, and sits on the global board of Education for Status and the Medill School Board of Advisers at Northwestern University.

Beyond monetary savings, Tariq looks to add value to McDonald’s customers through unique experiences and cultural offerings. “You connect through great unique experiences — and we’ve been doing that whether through unique merchandise offers — we did a program in July where we gave fans exclusive access to concerts through the app,” he said.

The latest offering from McDonald’s is the Cactus Plant Flea Market Box, inspired by the “universal familiar experience that we all had as children” when getting a Happy Meal. “We’re taking one of the most nostalgic McDonald’s experiences and literally repackaging it in a new way that’s hyper-relevant for our adult fans,” said Tariq in a press release.

“The impact of inflation is really challenging; there’s not a sector that’s really immune to the challenges,” Tariq stated. However, he reassured customers that McDonald’s is monitoring price increases to minimize the impact on them. “We try to monitor when we do those things in a way that they’re not hitting the customer too hard, but the reality is we continue to provide our customers with great value — making sure we have offers available,” he said.

Tariq earned an honors bachelor’s degree from Western University in Ontario and a master’s degree in integrated marketing communications from Northwestern University. He brings more than 20 years of experience in global marketing, communications, innovation, and insights to McDonald’s. With his background in advertising and his bold and imaginative approach to marketing, Tariq is well-positioned to lead McDonald’s in creating compelling brand experiences for its customers.

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