Wendy’s has carved out a distinct personality on social network Twitter, dishing out caustic wit along with the latest news about the burger chain’s new menu items or promotional offers. That content helped Wendy’s to become one of the most followed brands on social media, but it’s still only one part of its broader strategy to engage consumers.
“We need to make sure that we are creating relationships with our consumers and we can do that through the power of storytelling,” Jimmy Bennett, vice president of media, social and partnerships at Wendy’s, said in this interview with Beet.TV. “We have to make that entertaining. We have to make that engaging. We have to understand how we can integrate into our consumers lives.”
Telling a brand story is a key part of forming an identity that leaves a lasting impression among consumers.
“The key component is making sure that we have some good partners who are able to work with us in order to deliver those messages in the right capacity,” Bennett said. “Working with the right people to bring those stories to life through key passions through key interests, through the key ways that consumers want to consume media.”
Sponsoring March Madness
The NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament is one of the most watched sporting events in the United States, giving brands a way to reach a broad audience of consumers. Wendy’s is the official hamburger and the official breakfast of those March Madness games.
“We want to celebrate with the official breakfast. We then want to make sure that through delivery, the official hamburger is getting ordered, and you’re using that in order to use while you’re watching the game,” Bennett said.
Wendy’s for several years has had a marketing partnership with “Rick and Morty,” the animated series that appears on Cartoon Network’s “Adult Swim” nighttime programming block. Last summer, Wendy’s opened a pop-up restaurant with a “Rick and Morty” theme and sold two drinks tied into the show nationwide.
“We’ve definitely prioritized how do we really respect that fan base and find ways to not disrupt that experience, but to really enhance it,” Bennett said. “We’re always making sure that we are respecting that story.”
Consumer data help to inform the company’s strategy of reaching and engaging its target audiences.
“The beauty of the Wendy’s approach is there are so many different channels and so many different platforms that we know that consumers and fans are engaging this content across a variety of different perspectives,” Bennett said. “It might be different aspects of priorities from a Wendy’s business perspective, but we’re always using those to make sure that we can effectively deliver a true integration into whatever the campaign, whatever the partnership, whatever that story looks like.”
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