The responsiveness of social media allows brands to more easily tailor their messages to suit the needs of the immediate moment, even while staying true to their images and product lines. As more people are staying home due to the recent pandemic, home improvement brands could emphasize the stress release of home improvement and the need to make homes seem like a refuge and an entertainment playground simultaneously. Engagement, combined with enhancing entertainment on social media, can likewise be fostered by humor.
For example, Wendy’s is a fast food brand that has always been second to McDonald’s in terms of its brand recognition and sales. However, it has cultivated a funny social media profile that has earned the restaurant chain many Twitter followers, as well as increased sales. In one exchange, someone asked Wendy’s on Twitter how much a Big Mac cost, to which the account (personified by a smiling red-haired little girl) responded, “Your dignity” (Bikker, 2019). This also enhances the pleasure of the experience with interacting with Wendy’s on social media and in real life, fostering a close relationship for the consumer with the brand. The brand allows the consumer to learn about new products. The brand is enhanced with more traditional television advertising depicting juicy, delicious burgers and tasty chicken sandwiches but has generated a new demographic of critical younger consumers who like the sassy, funny Wendy’s online voice.
It should be cautioned, however, that not all brands could use Wendy’s social media strategy with the same ease. Wendy’s does not sell a serious product, so cultivating honesty, empathy, and trust is not as necessary, versus, say, health insurance or cars (Bikker, 2019). Its demographic is also very young, and savvy to the ways in which Twitter and online technology often make use of sarcasm and abrasiveness to make a point (Bikker, 2019). A product’s verbal and visual tone must be consistent, even if it adopts a slightly more informal tone on Twitter, where it may interact with followers on a one-on-one basis.
Still, many companies could learn from Wendy’s approach in the digital age. Rather than simply promote deals or deliciousness, Wendy’s has created a persona and ethos for its product far edgier than its primary competitor, McDonald’s. Given that consumers online and coveted younger consumers in particular are mistrustful of brands that make use of strategies that obviously appear to be advertising, Wendy’s approach has proved useful.
In this assignment, select 2 advertisements within the same industry (e.g., YouTube, newspaper, TV, or radio). Write a 5-page analysis of each advertisement for your marketing report based upon the following criteria: