If you have a Twitter, and you aren't taking a look at Wendy's account, you're missing out on some peak comedy. Their responses to Twitter mentions and the way they joke about current pop culture never cease to crack me up. What takes the cake every year, is #NationalRoastDay. In 2018, Wendy's decided to take part in making up a fake national day dedicated to roasting anyone that asked for it. Random followers, local celebrities, and even big brands take part in the fun. This year, Wendy's did not hold back.
Is it a smart social media strategy to make fun of your followers? Does this give your brand a bad name? What happens if a joke goes too far? While these are a lot of questions that most brands have to ask before ever even considering doing something like this, we have to look at the history of Wendy's Twitter. In 2017, they caught a lot of attention with their fiery responses to hate messages and people trying to compare their food to competitors. With their gained popularity, users started asking Wendy's to "roast" them as well. Thus started the beautiful tradition of Roast Day.
What makes this a good strategy? For one, people flocked to Wendy's account after the first round of roasts. To keep that same energy, they had to keep going. Roasting everyday would become tired and, to a degree, mean. Dedicating one day to it, gives followers something to look forward to once a year. Heavy roast posts have people running back to your page for the rest of the day, so why not capitalize on it? At the end of the roast, Wendy's tweeted about an exclusive offer on their app. It also makes for a much more engaging social media account, a major goal for most. It's not a machine of constant promotions and cookie cutter responses and interactions. This puts a real voice to the brand.
I don't think I'd ever be brave enough to use my brand's social media account as a roast center, but hey, what works for some doesn't work for others. Posting questions and fun pictures is more my speed, but I can't knock them for finding a fun, unconventional way to grab people's attention. There is no one right way to use your social media. The research might show that posting infographics and promotions at peak times are the winning ways to get people to engage with you, but that doesn't work for all audiences. When coming up with a social plan, think more about the audience you're presenting this to than anything else.
Now please enjoy some of my favorite tweets from this year's roast:
If I put all my favorites, this would become a 20-minute read. If you want to see more, take a look at their Twitter. Let me know if you think I should try and get roasted next year!