burger king tweet
Restaurant Burger King en mars 1992 à Miami Beach aux États-Unis. (Photo by Robert VAN DER HILST/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images)

Yesterday was International Women’s Day, and one of the most significant talking points online was this Burger King tweet.

Large corporations love nothing more than hijacking a global narrative in the interest of self-promotion and International Women’s Day proved the perfect platform for Burger King.

The fast-food company was attempting to promote a culinary scholarship program to combat gender disparity in the restaurant industry. Still, the attempt at snatching the limelight was misguided at best, offensive at worst.

Unsurprisingly, this Burger King tweet is not the first time a major corporation has tried (and failed) to master social media.

Since the Burger King tweet went viral – for all the wrong reasons – the company has backpedalled and apologised for the tone-deaf tweet.

KFC Gaming tweeted a response to Burger King UK with the caption: “The best time to delete this post was immediately after posting it. The second best time is now.”

However, the company also took out a full-page ad in the New York Times which featured the same shock-value slogan.

Burger King followed up the tweet with two more, explaining it was meant to promote equity among kitchen leadership and a scholarship program.

The timing of the Burger King tweet was no doubt part of the companies social media strategy. Yet, it represents further proof that large corporations don’t know how to get it right when tapping into the zeitgeist online.

In 2011 Japan was laid bare by a crippling tsunami that flattened much of Tokyo, triggering a worldwide relief effort.
Sensing an opportunity, MSN Bing sent a tweet design to simultaneously raise funds while also boost brand awareness.burger king tweet

All it ended up achieving was raising hell, as Twitter users piled on to condemn the opportunistic tweet.

If you thought the Burger King tweet so bad, spare a thought for Cinnabon. In 2015 the baked goods store looked to capitalise on the death of Star Wars actress Carrie Fisher. Cinnabon posted a picture of her as Princess Leia Organa, but with a Cinnabon Classic Roll in place of her famous Star Wars hair-do.

The internet pile-on was swift and ruthless (you don’t mess with Star Wars fans), and Cinnabon promptly apologised and deleted the tweet.

It seems even in death; we’re not safe from the heavy-handed social media teams of large corporations.

While the Burger King tweet might be the latest social media slip up from a fast-food chain, ut’s arguably not the worst. Closer to home, we saw KFC appear playful and flirtatious when promoting it’s new Hot and Spicy zinger. Instead, it felt smutty and salacious.

Rather than admit defeat, the company maintained it was an innocent mistake, nothing more. “This was a genuine tweet to launch KFC’s new Hot & Spicy chicken products next week. It was not intended to offend, and we’ve removed the image.”

Between the Burger King tweet and KFC’s porn-themed stuff up, we can’t wait to see what massive fail McDonald’s and Hungry Jacks have up their sleeve.