Nando's MY intentionally stirs up confusion amongst consumers in lead up to marketing promo

This year has brought about so many changes that many of us are left wishing that we could either fast forward to 2021 or rewind back to the good old days of pre-COVID. As we head into the final quarter of 2020, Nando's Malaysia is looking to turn back time and get everyone to once again, celebrate the year. However, merely putting out a social media post announcing its latest promotion was too passe for the brand since it is known for its wit and humour on social media.

In true Nando's fashion, it wished consumers Selamat Hari Raya and a Happy Chinese New Year over the weekend, which left everyone scratching their heads. The posts were done in collaboration with Fishermen Integrated and were part of a bigger marketing stunt to raise awareness about Nando's latest RM10 promotion for its full platter of four, in an attempt to Re-Celebrate 2020.

The Hari Raya post had 5.7k reactions, 2.2k comments and 3.9 shares, while the Chinese New Year one had 7.1k reactions, 1.5k comments and 3.3k shares. Interestingly, some consumers decided to be spontaneous and posted pictures of themselves doing Raya visiting, while some wished the brand Selamat Hari Raya too. Likewise, consumers also wished Nando's Happy Chinese New Year. Meanwhile, some guessed if the posts were part of a bigger marketing stunt that has yet to be unveiled. Some also assumed that the Raya post was in reference to the Pilihan Raya Negeri Sabah 2020, the recent state election in Sabah. There was, however, one netizen who said the Nando's employee who made the posts should either resign or change the posts since "the management [does not] understand Asia's festive seasons".

nandos hari raya 2020

nandos hari raya 2020

Separately, other brands also caught wind of Nando's latest social media stunt. Marrybrown, for instance, liked its Hari Raya post which led to a consumer to comment: "Marrybrown [is] watching you Nando's." Yoori Yoghurt Malaysia also seized the opportunity to raise awareness about its Happy Hour promotion. It said: "Gong xi fa cai. Happy Chinese New Year must have Happy Hour [at] Yoori Yogurt Malaysia." Meanwhile, the New Straits Times teased Nando's on Twitter, saying: "Happy New Year, Nando's. (Need a new calendar? We can help get you one.) Shopee was also curious about the chatter surrounding the posts and posted an emoji of a pair of eyes.

Additionally, GSC, MBO, myBurgerLab, EVA Airways and Xiaomi Malaysia also joined in on the fun. Elaine Chiew, Nando's Malaysia's senior marketing manager, said the campaign is in the spirit of the restaurant chain’s ongoing #KeepTheFlameBurning initiative.

“2020 has been trying for many. Since the pandemic started, we have been consciously trying to do more to support our customers and community. Now, we see that it's time to engage our customers more directly with a campaign that puts a smile on their faces. Post MCO, we also know that people are looking for ways to dine-out safely and spend more time with friends and family. We are glad to have the Re-Celebrate 2020 campaign come together to bring Nando's to customers in our own unique sense of humour and warmth," Chiew added.

Fishermen's ECD, Adam Miranda, said these missed celebrations and cancelled plans since the year started led to this idea to Re-Celebrate 2020.

"In our brainstorms, we knew this was something people all over Malaysia and Singapore needed. So why not celebrate Chinese New Year again this September. Or Hari Raya in October. Everything that you wanted to celebrate but couldn’t, you can all celebrate together at Nando’s. The campaign is about inspiring people, to let them know that it’s not too late to make it a good year," he explained.

Meanwhile, Fishermen's MD Mark Darren Lee added that in today's social media scene, it is important for brands to be unique, unconventional and sometimes just plain crazy to stand out from the clutter.

"Timing is also super important as it has a huge impact on a campaign’s vitality. We are thrilled that Re-Celebrate 2020 went viral and received such a good response over the weekend. This is made possible by the wonderful and awesome family we are blessed to have in our sampan at Fishermen. We are also truly grateful to have a client who trusts and believes in our ideas and strategies," he said.

Lee added that Re-Celebrate 2020 is another way for Nando’s to continue building connections and loyalty with its customers by demonstrating that it is a purposeful brand that cares about people.

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