Most people thought IHOP was hacked when they tweeted, “Pancakes on Fleek” (Fleek means “on point” or “awesome”) from their Twitter account the other day. In fact, if you look down their Twitter timeline you will see that they have completely changed their voice. It’s almost as if a young teen is tweeting from their account, but we can assure you this is not by accident.
In fact, they aren’t the first to do this. Wendy’s used the word “Fleek” in a tweet first to describe their food, and Taco Bell followed suit before IHOP hopped on the bandwagon. Last week Burger King tweeted a picture of their chicken strips with the caption, “These chicken strips tho.”
If you know something about marketing then you already knew that this was a marketing tool. In fact, it was a genius marketing tool that was planned with MRM in advance at a roundtable with a bunch of rich white business men. Yes, you guessed it!
Digital Marketing experts at IHOP Kirk Thompson and Darrin Kellaris spoke with Adweek.com and addressed the tweet:
“There has been a refinement of our Twitter voice. We’ve gotten more specific, more targeted about how we speak,” Thompson said.
“Twitter for us skews younger so it’s important to talk the talk when it comes to that fan base,” Kellaris said.
Well IHOP’s tweet received OVER 20,000 retweets. Celebrities like Missy Elliot have even retweeted them. Since they tweeted the trendy saying, they have grown 18 percent in their Twitter following. Not only are they attracting a younger crowd and making money doing it, but this marketing technique didn’t cost a pretty penny.
How do we feel about these large companies profiting off of “young black culture” ? The word was originally invented by a young black woman on Vine and now huge companies are using it as a marketing tool. Is it time for us to start trademarking our “lingo” and claiming our “culture” ? The truth is, black culture has a strong influence on society in general. You can see it in the McDonald’s commercials…the Kmart commercials…they all embrace the hip hop culture. It’s such a shame that the inventor of the word “fleek” didn’t receive a dime for her word.
Now,TSR is not one to bring up race in every situation. In fact we are reluctant to do so, but this…this doesn’t sit well with us.
What are your thoughts and opinions?