September 29, 2014

Apple's Misfortune is KitKat's Gain

by Stites & Harbison, PLLC

Isn't the saying that "one man's misfortune is another man's gain"? Last week, Apple's misfortune was certainly KitKat's gain. KitKat capitalized on the "bending flaw" of the new iPhone 6 by tweeting out what's been deemed the famous #bendgate tweet.

Kitkat Tweet1

The tweet went viral on social media. In the first 10 minutes, the clever tweet was retweeted 100 times. Less than an hour later, the post had 1,000 retweets, and within a span of 48 hours, it had generated over 23,000 retweets and more than 10,000 favorites. This de-throned Oreo, which held the previous reign with its "Oreo Dunk in the Dark" tweet. Oreo's tweet, which mocked the Superbowl incident where the lights went out in the Superdome, received 15,700 retweets and 6,500 favorites in the same time frame.

Oreo Dunk In The Dar

KitKat's tweet used the hashtag #bendgate to align with its "have a break, have a KitKat" marketing slogan. What's particularly clever about this branding move is that Hershey, KitKat's US distributor, had a co-branding deal with Google that resulted in Google's name being printed on approxiately 50 million candy bars. In 2013, Google announced that its next mobile operating system was going to be called Android KitKat, and the companies forged a no-cash, publicity-focused agreement for the co-branding effort.

Android Kitkat

It therefore seems quite appropriate that KitKat would poke fun at Google's competitor. KitKat didn't take a break after it's #bendgate success. KitKat expanded its campaign the following day with another tweet: "So what else bends or #breaks?".

Bend Or Break

#Bendgate has become the most retweeted advertisement of all time on Twitter, bumping Oreo's "Dunk in the Dark" tweet to second. Here's a flashback to the "Dunk in the Dark" campaign:

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