FlashStock Technology Inc.

McDonald's + Shutterstock Custom

In 1967, Canadians welcomed the first McDonald's restaurant to Richmond, British Columbia. Today, McDonald's Restaurants of Canada Limited has become part of the Canadian fabric, serving close to three million guests every day. Together with our franchisees, we proudly employ nearly 90,000 people from coast-to-coast and approximately 85 per cent of McDonald's 1,400 Canadian restaurants are locally owned and operated by independent entrepreneurs.

Rashel Hariri is the Digital Social Engagement Manager for McDonald’s Canada where she is developing the strategic presence of the brand on social media. She is dedicated to elevating McDonald’s Canada’s social media footprint, and believes that deep social listening, testing, and measurement are essential for strategic planning and ROI. She has spent the past 7 years managing, innovating, and growing the social media presence for brands in banking, non-profit organizations, and quick service restaurants.

“Working with Shutterstock Custom allowed us to produce an Instagram Story under tight timelines without compromising creative standards. We saw excellent results, with a high completion rate from our Instagram community.”
- Rashel Hariri, Digital Social Engagement Manager


Multiple platforms have been supporting vertical videos for a while now, and testing shows higher engagement than regular videos. However, brands need a cost effective way to create high volumes of customized content to make vertical videos successful.

McDonald’s Canada was looking to share a fun and engaging Instagram Stories post around their festive offerings that were available for a limited time only. McDonald’s is known for their fries, and to add a new fry offering is an incredibly exciting thing.

To do this, they wanted to work with a creative technology solution to create Instagram Stories that showed their product in an exciting holiday unveiling.

The ideal solution needed the ability to scale imagery and videos at a reasonable price. It also needed to have a quick turnaround, since the Instagram Stories content needed to be posted around the same time as their product launch.


Using proprietary technology, Shutterstock Custom used its global network to orchestrate custom content creation with photographers. Having worked on various creative Instagram projects, Shutterstock Custom was the ideal solution for testing Instagram Stories and creating best practices with McDonald’s Canada.


Through the Shutterstock Custom solution, McDonald’s Canada calibrated their brand look and feel, then submitted a creative brief that was distributed to photographers to create an exciting post around a new product launch. A stop motion technique was used, combining many still frames into an excitement-building story to unveil the new product like a gift to its customers. All shots were taken in vertical/portrait to suit the Instagram Stories platform.


McDonald’s Instagram Story consisted of 2 stop motion videos including in-app text. The story was very engaging and performed above average. Reaching 14% of their audience organically with a 21% churn rate, the Instagram Story performed in the top quadrant of similar companies in an Instagram Stories experiment conducted with multiple creative vendors.

Since the product launch was timely, the story was completed and ready for posting within a few days, satisfying McDonald’s need for speed to market.

Learn how Shutterstock Custom can help you globally scale content creation by requesting a demo.