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The popular fast-food delivery chain, Mr Delivery, has recently come under new management and is relaunching the brand with a new identity and purported improvement in service. The campaign centres on the chef in the company’s logo, who has just been fired for poor service and is ranting angrily on the company’s Facebook page.
The campaign comprised two parts. Initially, Mr Delivery sent a box of content to several prominent South African bloggers in private. The box contained various documents, including news clippings and CCMA files, and a cassette player and a tape, which consisted of funny audio clips in which the angry chef phones various local celebrities to ask if they will hire him.
The second part of the campaign involved an email and Facebook viral drive. Customers who had registered with Mr Delivery received an angry spam-like message written by the chef, followed by an apology from the company’s management and a link to the Facebook fan pages for the company and the chef.
The campaign seems to have faced some stumbling blocks. Many of the bloggers who received the boxes of content didn’t write any posts about it to generate the initial buzz. Chris, from the popular local iMod blog, said that he was waiting for the company to launch the rebrand to the public before writing a blog article, though he did post several tweets about it. This initial silence probably meant that not enough people were aware of the coming campaign to understand it as it happened. This also meant that the two parts of the campaign were disjointed, rather than building on each other.
The second major concern, voiced by many commenters on the company’s Facebook page, was that the email campaign constituted spam – both because they had not opted in, and because of the edgy content in the messages. The registration process on the company’s website does not give customers the option of opting out of email communications, though there is an unsubscribe link in the email footer. This does not violate current laws, but would be a violation under the upcoming Customer Protection Act. In any case, several customers found the behaviour unethical and complained about it.
Some customers did not see the humour in the chef’s prank calls, vitriolic messages and muddled nationality. However, many others have reacted favourably to the new campaign, praising Mr Delivery and engaging with the owners and the chef on the Facebook pages. Chris from iMod was very impressed by the mailed package and shared the contents with his colleagues and family because he found them so entertaining. Both Facebook accounts have been inundated with posts, good and bad, with frequent responses from the new owners and the chef character. While definitely edge and borderline offensive at times, the campaign has certainly created a buzz around the brand.
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