The seemingly normal phrase “Can I advise you something?” has caused a stir among Malaysian netizens and Nando’s Malaysia has decided to jump in on the fun with a cheeky Facebook post. The phrase was reportedly said by Rosmah Mansor, the wife of former Malaysian PM Najib Razak, in an audio recording recently released by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission.
During a phone conversation with Najib, Rosmah was heard instructing him on how to manage the 1MDB scandal which came to light in 2016. She could also be heard screaming and asking her husband if she could advise him on something. Nando’s Facebook post said since everyone’s advising each other, it also wants to advise consumers. This was accompanied by an image which said: “Can I advise you something? Double your Chillies at Nando’s from 9-19 Jan”. The Chillies are part of Nando’s rewards system.
In a statement to A+M, senior marketing manager Elaine Chew said it believes in being relevant and close to where its consumers are. “We always want to leverage on what is trending that is in line with our brand personality, to engage with our audience while having a little bit of fun,” she added.
She explained that the Facebook post was something it worked on instantly with its social media agency Fishermen Integrated. “We are about building love for the brand on social media, and our goal is to share the Nando’s love around,” Chew said.
Reactions from netizens were mainly positive, with most of them thanking Nando’s for the advice and praising the team for its effective marketing and cheekiness. At the time of writing, the post had about 1.2k reactions, 263 comments and 572 shares. Last year, the brand also created a stir online when it took a dig at McDonald’s Malaysia for its new Portuguese Chicken Burger. The jab eventually turned into an online banter between the two brands.
Nando’s marketing director Chai Hui Fung told A+M previously that the Nando’s personality, as a brand, has always been to always get involved in conversations that are relevant to the brand and its consumers. She added that its brand values guide them in any and every piece of communication it publishes. Chai explained that Nando’s is a brand with a dual personality for being both fiery and caring.
Meanwhile, Malaysian political graphic designer Fahmi Reza also jumped in on the buzz by posting a graphic resembling Rosmah with her arched eyebrows and trademark hairstyle.
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In 2018, Fahmi was fined RM30,000 and sentenced to one month’s jail for uploading caricatures of Najib on social media. He was reportedly found to have violated Section 233(1)(a) of the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998, according to The Star.