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Wendy’s Twitter Beef Sets the Bar for 2017

As the New Year kicks off there’s no telling where the headlines will take us. Brands of all shapes and sizes will be rolling out their latest and greatest ideas to catch the eye of influential media platforms. With that being said, I’d like to shine light on Wendy’s viral Twitter account that has got us all talking (and possibly thinking of getting a Frostee and fries?).

If you’ve logged on to any social media website lately, you’ve seen the top trending “roast” between the official Wendy’s Twitter account and sassy dissatisfied customers. If you’re unfamiliar, read this Mashable article to learn more. With a brand as well known as Wendy’s it’s inevitable to please every customer and of course many of them will turn to social media to voice their opinions. The social media team adjusted their strategy and now they’ve set themselves apart from the rest.

Most brands play it safe. They respond and offer up an apology or if you’re lucky – a free meal. Wendy’s took a different approach over the past week and in my opinion, it was the right one. Social media has been progressively changing the way companies interact with their customers over the past few years. It’s 2017, we want transparency and that’s what Wendy’s has delivered – a real approach to interacting with angry Twitter users.

With the exception of properly addressing actual problems that come to light over social media, there’s no harm in poking fun at some comments that are truly just bizarre. You never know – it could land you national coverage, thousands of new followers and an unlimited amount of memes circulating the internet. What more could your communications team dream of? Don’t get me wrong; a stunt like this needs to be strategic to be successful. There is a fine line between being humorous and going too far, but as we peak into the New Year I predict that many brands will tamper with this approach on social media and put a new take on their specific brand voice.

2016 introduced many new advances to the world of social media; companies and public figures have used them to their advantage.

Beyoncé released an entire visual album overnight, which generated 4.1 Million Tweets in just 48 Hours. Challenging artists to deliver new and innovative ways to deliver music.

The Presidential election results were streamed live on Facebook for 24,350,587 people to view in real-time on the Empire State Building by CNN. Throughout the entire election, the way political figures communicate using social media has tremendously been shifted.

People Magazine, Refinery 29 and other notable news sources turned to SnapChat to curate featured content for users to read news instantly. SnapChat users hold the first-hand experiences of people across the world in their fingertips. I haven’t been to Australia yet but with SnapChat I’ve seen what the locals have. I find it amazing!

The Make-A-Wish Foundation and Disney partnered for the #ShareYourEars campaign which resulted in a $2 million donation to Make-A-Wish®. With large campaigns like this one or small ones made by people we personally know through websites like GoFundMe, we are able to easily impact the causes that matter most to us.

With all of this being said, many people and companies utilized the power of the internet to grow their brand in 2016. With Wendy’s sassy comebacks during week one it’s very clear that 2017 will be no different. I’m looking forward to seeing how our favorite brands will take advantage of the tools and interactive possibilities with their followers. Bring it on!