- Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen is urging people to order chicken for dinner instead of pizza with a social media campaign that urges people to prank family members by changing the autocorrect feature in their smartphones, per an announcement shared with Mobile Marketer.
- The fried-chicken chain posted a video on YouTube explaining the three steps to replace the word "pizza" with the phrase "Popeyes instead of pizza" in mobile devices. The next time a family member tries typing "pizza" as a preferred dinner choice during debates about what to order, the Popeyes message will automatically appear in the chat.
- Customers who reset the autocorrect feature of their family members' smartphones can receive a $5 discount on their next meal by posting a screen grab of the text conversations to social media with the hashtag #LoveThatAutocorrect, per the announcement.
Popeyes' latest social media campaign may test several technical hurdles, including the ability of people to gain access to family members' smartphones that come equipped with password protection, fingerprint scanners or facial recognition technology. However, the chance to win discounts on food may inspire people to work together on changing those autocorrect settings and sharing the results on social media. The social sharing can help Popeyes to extend the reach of its campaign as more people participate for a chance to receive discounts on food.
Popeyes' social media campaign comes as more consumers order food for delivery instead of going out to eat amid concerns about the coronavirus pandemic. The takeout and delivery business last month helped Popeyes to return to pre-pandemic sales levels for restaurants open at least one year, Fox Business reported. The chain boosted same-store sales by 26% in Q1 from a year earlier, while systemwide sales expanded by 32% to $1.26 billion with the opening of new restaurants, per a report by parent company Restaurant Brands International.
Popeyes has been active with its digital media campaigns this year, including efforts to boost its delivery business. The chain last month ran a campaign on Twitter that started when it posted the word "pizza" without any explanation. Because Popeyes had never served pizza, the post led to speculation by Twitter users that the company was planning to introduce a new menu item, Adweek reported. Instead, the stunt campaign promoted free delivery on family meal orders. In March, Popeyes started a social media campaign that shared the login details for the brand's Netflix account with select online fans, letting them watch streaming videos while eating food delivered from a nearby restaurant.
Both this campaign and the previous pizza-focused effort are examples of the type of competitive sparring that was popular with QSR brands before the pandemic, signaling that the tactic might be returning to marketers' toolboxes as consumers tire of the sameness of coronavirus-related campaigns.