In 2022, KFC set out to shift their tag line “That’s Finger Lickin' Good” from an attribute to an attitude. To do that on social media we aimed to bring the Finger Lickin' Good (FLG) attitude by taking our food seriously, but not ourselves with content that entertained, inspired and connected with our target audiences. In our community management we were looking for opportunities aimed at driving brand love, and refining our personality and voice by showing off that attitude in a relatable way.
On June 6th, KFC launched the Jack Harlow Meal in partnership with the famous rapper and Kentucky native Jack Harlow. The Jack Harlow Meal was a segue into reaching younger audiences, so we launched the meal focusing on social channels as our message driver On June 8th the famous rapper (and good friend of Jack Harlow) Lil Nas X tagged the KFC US Twitter account jokingly citing an incident with a “KFC worker”, who he pictured in the tweet with the caption “your employee just slapped me, called me a bottom, and refused to give me my change @kfc”. The “KFC worker” that he was citing was actually Jack Harlow in a picture that had been shared widely on the internet during the Jack Harlow meal launch event in Atlanta.
We saw it as an opportunity not only to playfully engage notorious Twitter troll Lil Nas X while promoting the new meal, but to also show our FLG attitude tone of voice—so KFC jumped into the conversation, replying with “Oh so you liked the meal.”
The response not only received a Retweet and a TikTok post response from Lil Nas X (who has almost 37M followers on both platforms combined) but also earned media, responses from other brands and 4.5M impressions, 224.9K likes, 9K retweets, 13.2% engagement rate on Twitter within 30 days of being posted. The clapback not only directed people to KFC’s Twitter which had a +280% follower growth increase as a result of the tweet, but promoted the new Jack Harlow Meal with no money spent.