McDonald?s unwraps social frenzy to celebrate all-day breakfast rollout

McDonald?s is celebrating the rollout of its all-day breakfast menu by enticing Southern California residents to post photos of their meals using the #AllDayBreakfast hashtag on Twitter or Instagram for a chance to win coupons and prizes.

The fast food chain saw a veritable social media blitz occur yesterday as #AllDayBreakfast remained a top trend on Twitter, thanks to fans? excitable posts and contest entrants? personal photos. As McDonald?s aims to ramp up its sales on the heels of its release of the United States version of its mobile application, leveraging an easy-to-enter social media contest is likely a smart strategy for the marketer behind the Egg McMuffin.

?In order to prove the campaign's success, McDonald's should go beyond looking at total hashtag mentions,? said Dennis O'Malley, CEO and co-founder of ReadyPulse, San Carlos, CA. ?If they find that social influencers are picking up their message versus the average Joe, then the campaign will have been very successful.?

Driving awareness
McDonald?s has officially brought the all-day breakfast offerings to all U.S. consumers, but is singling out the Southern California market for an exclusive social media contest. Fans are asked to take to Twitter or Instagram and post a photo of themselves enjoying their breakfast food via the #AllDayBreakfast hashtag.

Users must also follow the @McDonalds_SoCal account to be eligible for entry. Potential prizes include a year?s worth of complimentary breakfast coupons and an invitation to an exclusive party.

Hordes of social media users have already expressed their excitement at the national rollout, and have posted photos of themselves eating favorites such as Hash Browns, Sausage McMuffins and Egg McMuffins.

Consumers in the New York metropolitan area are encouraged to share their own experiences with the new menu by tweeting via #BreakfastNeverSleeps.

Additionally, McDonald?s has tapped several social influencers to post branded advertisements on their Instagram or Twitter accounts in a bid to spread the word in an organic fashion.

?We see that the most effective food and beverage companies are activating an earned media marketing strategy with social influencers to inspire the greater public audience to discover/download an app or discover/enter a contest, which has a significant positive effect on any social campaign that is only supportive by paid and owned media marketing,? Mr. O?Malley said.

The marketer has previously leveraged social media to reward loyal consumers.

Last May, McDonald?s asked customers in Northern California to text or tweet their nominations for who should receive a free breakfast delivered by McDonald?s employees, pointing to how mobile is at the center of efforts to surprise and delight consumers (see story).

Fueling app downloads
The all-day breakfast rollout arrives on the heels of McDonald?s renewed push to reconnect with fans and gain new customers via mobile.

The brand tiptoed behind its competitors by rolling out a mobile application to United States consumers this fall, but still has potential to reclaim some of its flagging revenue with in-app coupons.

Users will be able to check their app for offers and specials, some of which are changed weekly. Customers seeking to get the best deals on their breakfast items may very well be swayed to download the new app, especially as McDonald?s has now proven that it listens and responds to customer feedback.

The chain claims that the all-day breakfast has been the top request from its customers, with more than 120,000 users tweeting at the brand to voice their desire for a wide-scale deployment in the last year alone.

McDonald?s has also joined the shift towards mobile delivery by partnering with mobile app Postmates for a pilot at 88 New York locations (see story). Postmates may now experience a major surge in McDonald?s orders as the novelty of All Day Breakfast gains traction.

Nevertheless, the social frenzy surrounding its latest campaign will likely be enough to stir up some interest in its own branded app.

?McDonald's is smart having an app strategy; with Facebook Ad prices jumping 335 percent year-over-year and ad-blocking technology with the new iOS 9, it?s very hard to get your brand message out on mobile,? Mr. O?Malley said.

Final Take
Alex Samuely, staff writer on Mobile Marketer, New York