A tongue-in-cheek Eminem-inspired Facebook reply by Woolworths has won the supermarket giant glowing praise and pledges of loyalty from shoppers.
In another example of how brands can use humour when talking to their customers on social media, Woolworths was responding to a viral post about spaghetti from Facebook user Jamie McGloin on Monday.
McGloin had posted a photo of himself on the Woolworths Facebook page along with a story about purchasing spaghetti that used the lyrics of Lose Yourself, a rap song by Eminem, which features in the move 8 Mile.
While music fans have long substituted Eminem’s lyrics “palms are sweaty” to “mum’s spaghetti”, McGloin took the joke a few steps further.
“I lost myself in the spaghetti because I had spaghetti on my spaghetti already,” he wrote to the supermarket.
Following McGloin’s lead, Woolworths’ social media team responded with instructions to cook his spaghetti, to the tune of the same song.
“Dear Jamie, you can do anything you set your mind to man,” the team from Woolies said.
“The answer to your burning question is pretty clear … All you need to do is Lose Yourself in the spaghetti, the sauce, you own it. You better never let it go! You’ve only got one pan, don’t miss your chance to cook, cuz dinner only comes once in a day. Yo.”
And the fun didn’t stop there, with Woolies social media team demonstrating their knowledge of other Eminem songs too.
“May I have your attention please? May I have your attention please? Will the real spaghetti please stand up? I repeat, will the real spaghetti please stand up? We’re gonna have a problem here,” Woolworths commented in reference to Eminem’s track The Real Slim Shady.
Another Facebook user Kyle Richards left a comment to the tune of the song Stan, telling Woolworths “I wrote you but you still ain’t calling. I left my cell, my pager and my home phone at the bottom”.
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“But anyway stuff it, what’s been up man? How’s your produce?” he said.
“Dear Kyle, we meant to write to you sooner but we’ve just been busy. You asked about our produce? It’s as fresh as it could be,” Woolworths replied.
McGloin’s original post has since been liked by more than 120,000 people and shared over 35,000 times, while Woolworths’ first response has attracted over 150,000 likes.
Many Facebook users have offered the supermarket giant a “round of applause” for its musical skills and adopted various hashtags.
Some have even said the response has made them more likely to shop at Woolies in the future.
“I’m sorry Coles I never meant to make you cry but tonight I’m cleaning out my pantry #WooliesIsFresher,” Ryan Lewis wrote.
“I will bring my dollars to you today simple [sic] because you made my day and gave me a good laugh,” said Claire Kattenberg.
“I’ve never felt so close to a supermarket in my whole life. Forever doing my spaghetti shopping at Woolworths,” Elle King said.
Nicole Matejic, author of the book Social Media Rules of Engagement, told SmartCompany this morning Woolworths response to McGloin is “a really good example of a big brand humanising itself with its audience and using humour in under the right context”.
“They’ve had a little fun and engaged their audience,” she says.
Matejic says brands “can’t buy that kind of PR or goodwill” and she describes the overwhelmingly positive response from Facebook users as a “nice turn of events” for Woolworths, which copped flak for some of its marketing efforts earlier this year.
For other brands hoping to use their sense of humour when responding to customers online, Matejic recommends making sure you properly gauge the tone of a customer’s post before posting a response.
“It can go wrong and go wrong quite severely,” she says.
“Apply a common sense filter to it … and get someone else to read it to check the context is right.”
“Context is really, really important and timeliness is important too,” she adds.
SmartCompany contacted Woolworths but the company opted to let the posts speak for themselves.