Skip to main content

Stop Talking About The Oreo Tweet. It’s All About Arby’s

By January 27, 2014February 25th, 2021

Last night’s Grammys broadcast wasn’t all that memorable from a musical perspective. Although the performance by Nile Rodgers, Daft Punk, Stevie Wonder and Pharrell was truly awesome.

Those of us in social media marketing will remember last night’s Grammys as the night the Oreo tweet was dethroned as the Tweet of the year. It also will cause some discussion as to what’s happened to the Oreo social media direction.

The new king of the hill of brand based, real-time social media is Arby’s. What Arby’s did made the Oreo tweet seem insignificant. Let’s remember. Oreo told us all that they had planned for a long time to be ready for a moment in last year’s Super Bowl. And when the lights went out, their months of planning and development culminated with this:

Not bad at all. Nearly 16,000 retweets. Every one was stunned and amazed. It was pure genius. It was the talk of the trade magazines, it was the talk of SXSW with a panel convened to discuss it, and just about every brand has worked to replicate it. Some have even failed miserably in their attempt to be like Oreo.

In nearly 12 months, no other brand could seemingly capture lightning in a bottle the way that Oreo did.

But then Pharrell walked out on the stage at the Grammys last night and wore this:


Seizing the moment in pure real time, seemingly spur of the moment genius, Arby’s posted this tweet:

Game over for Oreo! It didn’t get a chance to complete its full year as the Tweet of the Year. It certainly can no longer be considered as the best brand tweet of all time. It’s not even close. As of this moment this simple tweet by Arby’s…with no image attached…just text, has garnered over 74,000 retweets and 40,000 favorites, in under 24 hours!! 500% more than the Oreo tweet grabbed in nearly a year!

My only hope is that Arby’s doesn’t come out and tell us how they planned this tweet for a year. Lie to us if you have to. Don’t kill the fantasy. Please don’t tell us that your team paid Pharrell to wear the perfectly placed hat with the Arby’s colored jumpsuit.

If you tell me this was planned I may just stop all pursuits of social media marketing. Let us bask in the simplicity of what you achieved.

We already know that Arby’s didn’t think of this on their own. As you can clearly see, the Arby’s tweet came at 8:28PM. Complex style posted this at 7:38PM:

So it appears that Arby’s merely took the ball and ran with it. Which is ok. It’s still somewhat spontaneous. They took a shot. It worked and it set the new standard. Even if it was someone else’s idea. In any event. Congrats to Arby’s for noticing and being on the ball.

As for Oreo, what the f@#k?? Seriously?? How do you go from social media royalty with the Super Bowl “Dunk in the Dark” tweet to being relegated to the discount bin of social media by posting automated tweets around last night’s broadcast. Then you got caught in your automated stupidity by posting this:


Oreo Cookie, you’ve become irrelevant in social media. You’re just a brand messaging hack pushing out spam. This was embarrassing and it puts you in the same category as Home Depot and SpaghettiOs. You’re done. You’re the aging, fat champion who needs to ride out into the sunset. Automated tweets during a live tent-pole event? That’s completely inexcusable.

All hail Arby’s…for the time being.

Barry Cunningham

Author Barry Cunningham

Barry Cunningham is an antagonist of conventional wisdom. Check out our case studies. They will give you an idea how we help brands & businesses amplify their conversion and lead gen campaigns by deploying digital advertising campaigns at scale. And I invite you to subscribe to my newsletter.

More posts by Barry Cunningham