McDonald's Twitter Campaign Goes Horribly Awry
Printer-friendly versionPDF version
a a
 
Type Size: Small
Gus Lubin
Business Insider
January 24, 2012

A twitter campaign by McDonald's backfired when people started sharing the wrong kind of McDonald's stories.

McDonald's kicked things off on Thursday with the hashtag #MeetTheFarmers, in a campaign meant to draw attention to the brand's guarantee of fresh produce.

Related: Could Fast Food Robots Steal McJobs?

Later in the day, however, the burger company used a dangerously vague hashtag: "When u make something w/ pride, people can taste it," McD potato supplier #McDstories

People took this hashtag and started talking trash. The Daily Mail gathered some of the best:


Here's an emailed statement from McDonald's social media director Rick Wion:
Last Thursday, we planned to use two different hashtags during a promoted trend – #meetthefarmers and #mcdstories.

While #meetthefarmers was used for the majority of the day and successful in raising awareness of the Supplier Stories campaign, #mcdstories did not go as planned. We quickly pulled #mcdstories and it was promoted for less than two hours.

Within an hour of pulling #McDStories the number of conversations about it fell off from a peak of 1600 to a few dozen. It is also important to keep those numbers in perspective. There were 72,788 mentions of McDonald's overall that day so the traction of #McDStories was a tiny percentage (2%) of that.

With all social media campaigns, we include contingency plans should the conversation not go as planned. The ability to change midstream helped this small blip from becoming something larger.

More from Business Insider:
Most Big Companies Have A Tracking System That Scans Your Resume For Keywords
A Scary Indication Of How Long This Jobless Recovery Could Last
Once Again The Government Will Tax All Unemployment Benefits
How To Make A Big Decision When There's No Clear Answer
Two Simple Ways To Understand Customers Better Than They Know Themselves