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Special Project

Special Project
From the 10th Annual Shorty Awards

“Mean Girls Day,” or, The Day That Cheese Fries Went Viral

Entered in Physical & Digital


USA Today recently deemed Mean Girls the "movie that spawned a million memes." Never is that more true than on October 3, a cultural holiday memorializing a small but unforgettable moment from Tina Fey's beloved film. For 24 hours, Mean Girls-themed GIFs, videos and listicles flood newsfeeds around the world.

October 3, 2017 marked the first "Mean Girls Day" since the musical adaptation officially set its sights on Broadway. In the past, it was a moment celebrated almost exclusively on the Internet. This year, our goal was to create a celebration both online and IRL that would shift the focus from the film to the upcoming stage production.

Our integrated campaign was designed to:

1. Capitalize on the existing brand equity of the day.

2. Establish a brand for the musical adaptation that honored the film's existing fans in a playful and impactful way.

3. Spread awareness that tickets for the Broadway production were going on sale.

4. Garner press coverage for the show that would reach beyond the traditional Broadway fan.

5. Generate FOMCF (Fear of Missing Cheese Fries!) to encourage movie fans to turn out and capture content at in-person activations. At the same time, we wanted to include Mean Girls devotees around the world by creating opportunities for them to engage online.

Strategy and Execution

The campaign took shape in the form of an all-day event in New York City, which was shared worldwide via digital channels. The star of our show was a branded food truck with special guests, including Tina Fey, distributing orders of cheese fries (another reference to the film) to thousands of fans. This activation was supported by high-impact digital media and social campaigns. Here's the 411 on how it all went down:

The week prior, we teased the event with a press release and tip sheet to select outlets. Meanwhile, we installed the musical's artwork at the August Wilson Theatre, officially claiming our home on Broadway and creating a colorful, branded backdrop for the event.

The day before, we distributed event info, as well as an exclusive pre-sale code, to 10,000 fans who had signed up for first access to tickets.

"Mean Girls Day" kicked off at 12 am sharp on October 3 with all-day digital takeovers announcing "Tickets On Sale Today." These placements appeared on both theatre and general entertainment sites such as Playbill and New York Magazine.

Additionally, in conjunction with our partners at Paramount, we launched a motion graphic featuring the film's iconic "October 3rd" scene with new messaging about the show's on-sale. This graphic, which was shared on both the film and the musical's social accounts, saw 316,000 organic impressions and fueled online buzz before the food truck even hit the streets.

Between 8 and 9 am, the truck arrived at the theater to find hordes of fans already waiting. As the fries began to sizzle, paid social advertising launched and an Instagram takeover with Playbill began.

At 10 am, the box office officially opened, both in-person and via Ticketmaster. As press arrived at the theatre, e-blasts were deployed, a video featuring Tina Fey began running as YouTube pre-roll, and additional media campaigns began. These included: Google search, DBM retargeting, Lookalike modeling, and Facebook/Instagram prospecting and retargeting.

At 11 am, the truck opened for business. Fans who had been waiting since 8 am were finally treated to a helping of cheese fries served by special guest Tina Fey. While they waited, fans were encouraged to use a branded step-and-repeat for photo opportunities while show ambassadors distributed pink sunglasses and collected email addresses to be used for future marketing efforts. Meanwhile, our social team captured footage for our own video content and to be shared with Snapchat's editorial team for inclusion in their worldwide "Mean Girls Day" story.

After serving approximately 800 orders of cheese fries, the truck moved on to a second midtown location where the Broadway cast was waiting to take photos with fans and live coverage continued via Snapchat, Twitter, and Instagram. At 3 pm, the truck moved down to Union Square. There, it distributed another thousand orders of cheese fries before acting as a moving billboard as it cruised uptown from the Village to Central Park. By 9 pm, we had released a social video recapping the events of the day.


In 24 hours:

Approximately 71 press outlets including Entertainment Weekly, Vanity Fair, CBS News, and Refinery29 dedicated news to Mean Girls on Broadway, the on-site activities or on-sale. Another 19 outlets covered "Mean Girls Day" and mentioned the musical, resulting in a total estimated reach of over 488 Million.

Digital media takeovers were viewed over 1 Million times.

Posts on the Mean Girls Facebook page were viewed 1.8 Million times, resulting in nearly 48,000 reactions, comments and shares. Instagram stories were viewed 416,256 times. Organic posts and replies on Twitter reached 553,777 users and resulted in 20,472 likes, retweets, comments, and replies. Videos that Mean Girls and our fans shared to the "Mean Girls Day" Snapchat story earned 170 Million potential impressions.

Thousands of ticket orders were generated.

And, perhaps most importantly, an order of cheese fries was served every 8 seconds.


Entrant Company / Organization Name

SpotCo, Mean Girls Stage Development LLC