McDonalds has finally set up shop in the Twitterverse. But is it too late? McDonalds' movies, videos, blogs, social networks and Web sites have been cropping up all over the social media landscape for the last five years. And unfortunatey they are not singing the praises of the hamburger joint giant.
Every since the documentary "Super Size Me" was released in 2004, McDee's has come under some heavy scrutiny by advocacy groups, nutritionists and concerned parents. No longer the haven for families to feed their brood on the cheap, this expose' made us re-examine what we have been ingesting into our digested tracts since April, 1955.
Filmmaker Morgan Spurlock makes himself a test subject as he rigorously dines on a saturated diet of McDonald's fast food three -times a day for a month straight. His movie focuses on the physical and mental side-effects of consuming fast food as it infringes on one's well-being. The entire full-length flick is available here for those of you who want to pop some popcorn and sit a while.
McDonalds Sucks' Fan page on Facebook has attracted over 300 fans, and features status updates that even complain about its latest product offering...McCafe!
One McDonalds Suck fan's status update offered up a link to a Associated Content blog report titled, "Why a Root Canal is More Satisfying than McDonalds." According to blogger Joshua Huffman, "When you are going to get your root canal... you know that your toothache will subside within a couple days. You are going for the root canal treatment to get rid of pain. Going to McDonalds not only inflicts pain on you, but cows. Can your soul handle hurting cows?"
While 'McDonalds Sucks' Twitter profile currently only has 232 followers (as of this posting), it also promotes its Web site under the same name, which packs in a lot of ranting about why the site's administrator is definitely "hating it."
McDonalds Sucks Web site
So is the McDonalds Corporation late to the party? Have the 'widsom of crowds' taken a stance and is the groupthink's thinking of the inclination not to offer them a warm social media welcome?
Personally, for a company approaching its 55th birthday, I don't believe its too late to teach this dog a few new tricks.
I think if according to Heather Oldani, senior director of communications, "every 5 seconds every day someone is talking about McDonalds online," this fast-food giant might be down...but it certainly isn't down for the count.
I think their decision to join Twitter officially October 5 (even though they've tested the waters with a soft launch September 15) is a wise move on their part. And I would hope that they quickly learn to engage and touch their customer base in ways that only Twitter can allow them to do (with contests, discount coupon offerings, free product testings, etc.)
I also think that they need to empower their 700,000 employees working in the US to become brand ambassadors and evangelists online and start boosting their fan base not only on Twitter which currently only has 670 followers, but also on Facebook where they have attracted 1,239,185 fans to date.
McDonald's might have just woken up to the world of Social Media, but I think it has a great opportunity to turn its reputation around and truly make its Happy Meals happy (hold the fats) once again!