How the breakfast giants implement successful social media strategies


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Arguably, Denny’s and IHOP are America’s staple breakfast joints. Now each brand is also making its mark on social media.

Both brands have attracted the attention of millennials and communication pros. IHOP and Denny’s were recently featured in PR Daily and Ragan, respectively, for using combinations of slang, pop culture and humor on their sites. Take a quick glance at their Twitter, Tumblr and Instagram sites, and you can see Denny’s and IHOP don’t stick to the script.

Both employ what PR Daily has dubbed as “Tumblr-speak,” This dialect embraces terms many young people say often such as, “bae,” which is “before anything else,” a term usually reserved for a significant other; “tbh,” which is short for “to be honest” and “basic,” which Urban Dictionary defines as, “ … adjective used to describe any person, place, activity involving obscenely obvious behavior, dress, action.”

As previously stated, the brunch duo also benefit from popular culture. This IHOP tweet paraphrases the hit song, “Tuesday,” by iLoveMakonnen featuring rapper Drake. At the time of this post, the tweet garnered more than approximately17,000 retweets and 11,500 favorites, which is the equivalent to a social media grand slam.

Another bright spot in Denny’s and IHOP’s social media strategy is they are aware of their audiences and each network. There is no sign of Tumblr-speak on Denny’s Facebook and IHOP’s Facebook page. It’s safe to assume both teams researched and found younger generations tend to flock to Twitter, Tumblr and Instagram while more seasoned folks frequent Facebook, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Along with these social media tactics, Denny’s and IHOP also utilize more traditional tactics such as hashtags.

While social media strategies and tactics must vary between brands, Denny’s and IHOP’s approaches teach lessons in recognizing your audience, doing your research and implementing rules of engagement.

By Sarah Oyarce, @sarahhhroof

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