On Tuesday Elon Musk tweeted at McDonald’s that if they accepted Dogecoin he would eat a Happy Meal on live TV. It took all day for McDonald’s to respond and when they finally did the response was: “only if Tesla accepts grimacecoin.”
This is probably one of the worst possible responses McDonald’s could have tweeted for a variety of reasons. Immediately McDonald’s was bombarded with comments, tweets, and retweets from members of the crypto and Tesla community discussing the pumping of a non-existent shitcoin by the brand. McDonald’s marketing department may not have recognized that mentioning a cryptocurrency, whether real or not, would cause a rush to the market that could potentially lose people thousands of dollars. Within an hour there were fake Grimacecoins available for purchase on BSC (Binance Smart Chain) where users can create their own crypto coins. There is now even an “official” Twitter page for the coin.
Some of these newly created coins jumped thousands of percentage points with retail money flooding into purchase them in search of a quick flip. It may take a few days for all of this to shake out but the results so far seem likely unexpected from the McDonald’s marketing team.
There are several responses that the McDonald’s handle could have tweeted and received a much better response from people… I’d say McDonald’s fumbled the bag on this one.
It is as important to understand crypto and NFTs today as it was to understand email at the early stages of the internet. Crypto is a new frontier and if you were a professional in the marketing space it cannot be ignored. So, the lesson to marketers is this – be careful what you say or you might find yourself in hot grease, like McDonald’s social team.