The anticipated return of Wendy’s spicy chicken nuggets is just another reminder how the fast food chain is killing the social media game. It all began when Chance the Rapper tweeted positive affirmations, hoping for the return of the fan favorite. Wendy’s saw the opportunity to indulge in a new social media campaign and took it, causing the viral tweet to gain over 2 million likes.
Y’all keep asking, so here’s your chance.— Wendy’s (@Wendys) May 4, 2019
The people in charge say if you guys can get our tweet (this one right here) to 2 Million likes, they will bring SPICY CHICKEN NUGGETS BACK.
Let’s freakin’ do this! https://t.co/qrtvWXjj9V
While Wendy’s has always been a leading competitor in the food industry, 2017 marked the rise of the brand’s social media fame. The brand had a 126.5 percent follower growth rate in a single year which also resulted in the brand producing a higher net income. In the fourth quarter of 2016, their net income rested at $28.9 million while in 2017’s fourth quarter, it grew to nearly $160 million, showcasing the power social media can have on profits.
Wendy’s has gained massive media attention for its interactive and snarky Twitter comments over the past few years, giving a personality to the brand’s different social networks and even television advertisements. As a leader in the social media world, there’s a few lessons brands from all industries can take away from Wendy’s.
Like every brand, Wendy’s uses their social media to promote their products. However, it’s important to find the balance of being an active promoter without being pushy. Wendy’s masters this technique with their rapid response rate. Instead of using social media as a mere way to advertise its products, Wendy’s engages with their followers to build relationships and establish their online brand.
Wendy’s Twitter account initially rose to fame in 2017, when a tweet exchange with a teenager ended up becoming the most retweeted tweet ever, surpassing Ellen DeGeneres’s infamous selfie taken at the Oscars. The tweet, in which the teen asked how many retweets it would take for him to get a year’s worth of free nuggets, brought about the campaign #NugsforCarter which has been tweeted over 3.5 million times. This campaign alone caused the chain to gain almost a million new Twitter followers.
In 2017, Wendy’s replied to over 20,000 tweets, sending replies around every 15 minutes. Quick and consistent engagement keeps users satisfied, as they know any issues or concerns will be addressed immediately.
Whether it’s bringing back spicy nuggets, or engaging in some trivial Twitter beef, Wendy’s knows how to stay relevant. It’s clear that the public loves drama, and is exactly what Wendy’s does best. Creating an online feud with McDonald’s and other competitors has helped the brand gain a lot of attention, even prompting the brand to create television commercials surrounding the feud.
While Wendy’s may have received recognition for targeting fellow fast-food chains, creating drama isn’t something that will work for every brand and should be handled with caution. Wendy’s interactions with competitors is all done lightheartedly and is an effective approach at keeping users and customers talking about the chain.
Create A Voice Best Suited Towards Your Target Audience
Wendy’s keeps its personality consistent through its sarcastic remarks, sense of humor and rapid customer engagement. This causes users to engage and tweet more at Wendy’s, wanting to egg the brand on. Wendy’s rapid response rate combined with its humorous remarks is perfectly geared towards the millennials on Twitter, keeping engagement high. Establishing and maintaining a consistent voice in every tweet brings constant media attention and keeps momentum going strong.
Be Visually Appealing
While Wendy’s Twitter may be its most famous social media platform, there’s something to take away from its Instagram and Facebook as well. Instagram and Facebook focus more on their products than Twitter, as these platforms instead focus on capturing a good image of their meals. Wendy’s Instagram features burgers and beverages as the centerpiece of photos with fun backdrops including a red and white color scheme, the colors associated with the brand logo. The consistency makes the social media feed appealing to users.
The Instagram and Facebook page also post limited time offers announcements and deals, but still consist of the same witty humor found on Wendy’s twitter account.
Give Your Customers What They Want
The most important lesson to take from Wendy’s is to give customers what they want. Whether it be customer service, online beef, or spicy nuggets, seize any opportunity possible to serve clients and leave them fully satisfied.
Andrea Mazzola is an account coordinator at Flackable, a national, full-service public relations and digital marketing agency headquartered in Philadelphia. Follow Andrea on Twitter at @andreabmazzola