When a Nevada teen tweeted Wendy’s on April 5 and asked how many retweets it would take to get free chicken nuggets for a year, the fast-food chain—which has been dominating Twitter recently—replied 18 million. “Consider it done,” Carter Wilkerson said. And with that, he got to work.
HELP ME PLEASE. A MAN NEEDS HIS NUGGS pic.twitter.com/4SrfHmEMo3
— Carter Wilkerson (@carterjwm) April 6, 2017
At the time this blog was written, the title of most retweets ever belonged to Ellen DeGeneres who racked up more than 3.4 million retweets with her celeb-stuffed selfie at the Oscars in 2014. However, as of yesterday, May 9, 2017, Carter surpassed Ellen and took the crown for most retweets ever with nearly 3.5 million shares (and, yes, Wendy’s gave him the nuggs).
— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) March 3, 2014
While Carter was still pretty far from his goal of 18 million, he’s already had quite a lot of success as well as generated a lot of buzz with #NuggsForCarter. Additionally, Wendy’s has been using the buzz to draw attention to their own social media, including sharing #NuggsForCarter support from Google, Microsoft, Amazon, Aaron Paul, and more!
— Amazon (@amazon) April 8, 2017
It’s good to have dreams https://t.co/gY4WfBX45i
— Aaron Paul (@aaronpaul_8) April 8, 2017
Here’s are the social media lessons all brands can learn from a teenage and his quest for nuggs…
- Don’t ignore comments, posts & replies: Carter’s tweet only went viral because Wendy’s jumped into the conversation. If they hadn’t responded, shared, and continued the conversation, it would have just sat there on Twitter and not taken on a life of its own. While you don’t have to be sassy on Twitter like Wendy’s (always be authentic to your brand voice), it’s important to use social media to not just talk to your fans, but talk with them as well.
- Don’t discount unconventional influencers: When Carter first started his quest for the nuggs, he had less than 1,000 followers. Since then, he’s surpassed 67,000, but it just goes to show that anyone can be a brand ambassador on social media. While someone established with a million or more followers may be tempting, they might not be your loudest and proudest supporter. Seek out social media users who might have a smaller following but are proud to be your biggest supporter.
- Don’t plan to “go viral”—let it happen organically: Any time you plan a campaign or post to “go viral” chances are you’re overthinking it. It’s tough to plan to “go viral” because you never know what else is going to happen that day that distracts from your plan. However, if you instead work on building an authentic and robust social media presence built around engaging and conversing with your followers, you never know when something random—like 18 million retweets for some nuggs—might catch on.
Carter still has a long way to go before he reaches 18 million, but even if he doesn’t succeed in his quest for nuggs, he’s taught us all a few valuable social media lessons.
Image Credit: Identity Mag