When Belgium discount retailer, Lidl, decided to offer a free Christmas dinners to the needy they decided to use Twitter to get the word out there. The campaign went viral and now they’re looking at paying out roughly 200,000 euros ($260,000) in food.
Equal parts charity and marketing, the store said it would give the foodbank five of their four course chicken vol-au-vents and ice cream cake dinners for each tweet on a hashtag about the promotion. Their anticipation was they’d be giving away about 1,000 of the holiday dinners.
Things went off the wall when local newspapers started writing about the campaign and people started using the hashtag #luxevooriedereen, Dutch for “luxury for everyone.” Thus, instead of people thinking it was charity for the poor it was now charity for everyone.
It was a 24-hour promotion ranking in 7,500 people who sent the tweet using the hashtag and people thought Lidl would withdraw their offer. But Scrooge apparently doesn’t live in the Lidl headquarters.
The company decided to round the number up to 10,000 who are getting the 20 euro Christmas dinner package, complete with tomato soup, chicken, french fries, ice cream cake and chocolate. Grand total roughly 100% more than they had anticipated.
Moral of the story… be careful of the power of social media. Twitter is a force not to be reckoned with.