Feb. 16--Morning commuters using the MBTA's Aquarium Station and Hingham ferry recently were greeted with unexpected freebies.
McDonald's workers were handing out coffee and breakfast sandwiches as part of a new local advertising campaign.
The giveaways were filmed for two 30-second television commercials, one of which launches tomorrow, for the fast food giant's year-long "Good Morning Boston" campaign that started last month.
The on-location, reality-style commercials are a new approach in the Boston region that's worked well for McDonald's in other parts of the country, according to spokeswoman Nicole DiNoia.
"They're shooting at various other locations in the metro Boston and Boston area throughout the year," she said.
The commercials were the idea of H&L Partners, the San Francisco ad firm that took over from Boston-based Arnold Worldwide as the local market agency for McDonald's last fall.
The response from commuters, whose reactions were recorded on camera, was generally positive, although some were confused and others were camera-shy, according to Gabrielle McBee, one of the McDonald's crew members who was selected through a casting call to appear in the commercials.
"They just thought it was pretty neat that we were out there trying to brighten people's day up," said McBee, an Easton resident and human resources employee whose parents are McDonald's owner/operators. "It's an experience that definitely, I think, any McDonald's employee would have a good time doing."