October 19, 2019

McDonald’s Twitter Campaign #Hijacked

Twitter is taking a spot in the food safety arena in several ways. It was used to track a norovirus outbreak at the Canadian University Press’s 74th National Conference on January 14 of this year. Now it’s been used to tell food safety stories about a fast food giant.

Last week, McDonald’s launched a social media campaign where they encouraged comments from consumers using the hashtag #McDStories. Unfortunately, that campaign backfired.

Hashtags are the pound sign (which you call it if you’re over the age of 40) placed in front of a word or phrase that groups search terms. If you type in #McDStories, you’ll see a huge list of tweets. Other popular hashtags include #recipes, #foodsafety, and #chocolate.

The campaign was quickly pulled after people started twitting their displeasure with the fast food giant. Some people tweeted about their bad experiences at McDonald’s, including one memorable tweet about finding fingernail clippings in some of the food. Another person tweeted that “something in my McDouble chipped my molar.”

While only 2% of the tweets were negative, that’s still 1440 tweets out of 72,000 total tweets. McDonald’s stopped the campaign two hours after it was created.

The company has created another campaign using the hashtag #LittleThings, ostensibly to celebrate the “little things” in life such as “those extra fries at the bottom of the bag”. That hashtag has drawn more positive responses.

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