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If there's one thing integral to the success of any Twitter marketing campaign, it's this: know your company's Twitter handle.

That may seem like a simple task, but it eluded the person at Denny's who typed up menus that misdirected customers to a Taiwanese Twitter address. And while typos happen, there's a bigger issue for Denny's: no one noticed for four months. 

The menus were printed in October and directed customers to "Join the conversation!" online. Except rather than pointing consumers to one of Denny's two official Twitter accounts (DennysAllNightr or DennysGrandSlam), the menus printed up the Twitter handle of Dennys Hsieh, a man living in Taiwan. 

The menus were placed in 1,500 Denny's locations nationwide, and they may be fixed any time soon. A CNET reporter recently noticed the glitch and contacted the chain's social media firm.

Alan Miller, the co-owner of Filter Creative Group, tells CNET that "Denny's is fully involved on Twitter, keeping two separate accounts... the restaurants' breakfast and late-night menus aren't marred by featuring the wrong Twitter ID."

Miller's emphasis on what Denny's produces on Twitter doesn't seem a particularly good calling card for his firm. Being active on Twitter isn't the same as engaging customers in the space.

Rather than reprinting the menus, Denny's was hoping to take over Hsieh's account, since he hadn't updated it since August. But that doesn't seem like a likely fix at this point, considering that Hsieh has taken up tweeting again since the CNET article ran.

And while Denny's may have an active Twitter presence, it's not clear that consumers are taking notice. For example, it took one article on CNET for Hsieh to start twittering again. But four months of free advertising on Denny's menu didn't motivate him. Chances are, few people took the lead from the menu to check out Dennys on Twitter.

Images: Twitter, CNET

Meghan Keane

Published 22 February, 2010 by Meghan Keane

Based in New York, Meghan Keane is US Editor of Econsultancy. You can follow her on Twitter: @keanesian.

721 more posts from this author

Comments (4)

Mike Stenger

Mike Stenger, MikeStenger.com

Wow...just hilarious. Considering how important that is, I'm surprised it slipped through and no one caught it until now. Guess it's just a case of automatic assumption..."Oh, well Facebook.com/Dennys so our Twitter is probably Twitter.com/Dennys"

about 6 years ago

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Website design

What happened was really funny...carelessness on their part.How can such an important thing go unnoticed for four months? Totally agree with you where you've said that- " Being active on Twitter isn't the same as engaging customers in the space." Thanks a lot for this interesting pice of news.Look forward to more such ones.

about 6 years ago

Ed Stivala

Ed Stivala, Managing Director at n3w media

Great story Meghan - thanks for posting it.

I found your final point particularly interesting; "Chances are, few people took the lead from the menu to check out Dennys on Twitter." I suspect that this is spot on. 

OK, of course they should have proof read it and such a careless error doesn't look good. But does it *really* matter? Obviously not enough to make it worth reprinting the menus apparently. I suspect that it has not really had any significant impact what so ever.

Perhaps the lesson they have learned here is that their audience don't want to interact with them via Twitter (shock. horror!)? Maybe next time they could use that bit of space for content that their audience are interested in :)  It may even help them realise that the internal investment in Twitter (if there was any) could be cut and therefore budget allocated more usefully.

Of course this is only speculation on my part, I don't actually know how many people started to follow the Taiwanese gentleman as a result of the menus, but would agree with your perspective that it wasn't sufficient volume to motivate him to start tweeting again. 

about 6 years ago

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Shelly Lodes

Denny needs to engage and provide something of value to the followers they already have if they want to use the space to their advantage! Seems like their DennysGrandSlam does battle with IHop..... The menus are a great place to put their Twitter address but the Taiwanese guy only has 187 followers to date so obviously it hasn't had much impact. If anyone wants to bother, go check Tweetstats, they graph change in follower activity.

about 6 years ago

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