McDonald’s social media campaign backfired on Twitter last week after the fast food giant started using the #McDStories hashtag to encourage people to share their experiences. Instead of positive reactions, consumers mainly used the hashtag to make fun of and hurl abuse at the company.
McDonald’s intended to engage with real people and share stories about the restaurant. They tweeted “Meet some of the hard-working people dedicated to providing McDs with quality food every day #McDStories” and “When u make something w/pride, people can taste it.”
However, the power of the consumer on social media meant that they soon lost control of the campaign. It became a trending topic and people were inspired to share their views, but they were mainly sarcastic, witty and mocking. One person tweeted: “And by ‘pride’ do you mean ‘eyeballs and ammonia’? Yeah, people can taste it, all right. #McDStories” Another response read: “#McDStories Paid for my food but almost left cause I was high and convinced that the workers called the cops and were using my food as bait.”
This goes to show that Twitter is one advertising platform where companies have yet to achieve full control and their campaigns can go in the opposite direction to what they intended. Consumers have a lot of power on this medium and hashtags can be used by anyone to make negative comments as well as positive ones.