- Chipotle Mexican Grill reported record results for its campaign on TikTok, the fast-growing social video app, to celebrate National Avocado Day. Its #GuacDance challenge, which urged guacamole fans to show off dance moves dedicated to avocados, kicked off last week and received 250,000 video submission and 430 million video starts during a six-day run, per information shared with Mobile Marketer.
- The campaign was TikTok's highest-performing branded challenge in the U.S. The promotion resulted in Chipotle's biggest guacamole day ever, with more than 800,000 sides of the condiment served. The quick-service chain's avocado usage jumped 68% to 18,500 cases, or more than 420,000 pounds of the fruit, for National Avocado Day on July 31.
- The #GuacDance challenge featured children's musician Dr. Jean, whose "Guacamole Song" went viral on social media. Chipotle partnered with YouTubers Brent Rivera and Loren Gray to promote the dance-off on TikTok, which has been the most downloaded app in Apple's App Store for five straight quarters, per app analytics firm Sensor Tower.
Chipotle's results from its National Avocado Day campaign demonstrate the viral power of TikTok, which is especially popular among Generation Z. Challenging other TikTok users to participate in an activity is a key driver of viral growth on the platform that's owned by Chinese tech giant ByteDance. TikTok relies on high-end artificial intelligence (AI) to identify fun and quirky videos that people enjoy watching, and makes it easy for users to create and share videos with in-app tools.
The guacamole-themed dance-off is Chipotle's second challenge on TikTok after the #ChipotleLidFlip effort in May. The lid-flipping challenge, which urged customers to post videos of themselves flipping Chipotle packaging, spurred 110,000 user-generated video submissions and 104 million video starts in its first six days, CNBC reported. Chipotle also has been active with campaigns centered on occasions like National Avocado Day. To celebrate National Burrito Day on April 4, the chain offered free delivery on all orders of at least $10 through the Chipotle app and website or via food-delivery app DoorDash.
Chipotle this year has rebounded from the highly publicized food contamination incidents that plagued the chain for several years. Its stock last week hit an all-time high after the company reported earnings of $91 million, beating Wall Street estimates. Its digital sales nearly doubled in Q2 from a year earlier and its same-store sales grew 10%. The average customer check rose 3.5% after the chain raised menu prices last year and beefed up its loyalty program, CNBC reported.
The latest social campaign results may inspire other brands to test TikTok, whose campaigns have included efforts from GrubHub, clothing brand Guess, Sony Pictures and Uniqlo in the past year. TikTok is filling out its executive ranks to gain greater marketing expertise as it works to monetize its growing user base. Key hires this year include Facebook's former VP of Global Partnerships Blake Chandlee and Vanessa Pappas, YouTube's former global head of creative insights.
Meanwhile, TikTok is testing new features to make its app more appealing to a broader user base while also addressing significant concerns about brand safety. Kristin Lemkau, JPMorgan Chase CMO, last month tweeted that she deleted the app from her kids' phones — another sign that TikTok may not be doing enough to address concerns among major advertisers.