Steers has used its Facebook page to apologise to South Africans for its disasterous R10 burger special that saw a run on its outlets, and the burger chain run out stock.
“Real Burgers, Real Apologies”, the group trumpeted in a Facebook advertising campaign that clicks through to its page, where the real apology is laid out across its cover. “We got wacked this Wednesday and we’re 100% flame-grilled sorry,” it said.
“Steers would like to say to all South African burger lovers, that we’re sorry. On Wednesday 13 June we got whacked real good. We got whacked in our stores. We got whacked on Facebook. We even got tweet-whacked. We couldn’t have anticipated such an overwhelming response and as so many of you pointed out, we should know better than most how much South Africans love Steers,” it said.
“Steers appreciates your support and will continue bringing you real awesome burgers.”
On Tuesday, Steers announced that it was going to slash the price of its rib burgers from R25.90 to R10. The group already runs a Wacky Wednesday” special, that it punts as “one of the best deals we’ve had in Steers’ history”. And it that in “round two we’re taking things a little closer to the edge. Dangerously close”. No truer word was spoken.
Burger-loving South Africans flocked to its outlets en masse – and were livid when Steers ran out of its promised burgers. Listeners called in to radio stations, went made on Facebook and moaned on Twitter.
On Wednesday, Steers posted on Facebook: “We’re going bananas trying to find more rib burgers to stock at our stores – we will spread them out across the country as soon as we possibly can.
“Until then, you can grab a beef Rave Burger for R10 instead. We’re busy communicating this to all 500 franchisees, but sincerely apologise if the message hasn’t filtered all the way through just yet.
“It is carnage out there today – we’re trying madly to bring some semblance of calm to it all.”
Marketing expert Chris Moerdyk, talking to the Cape Argus, said the fiasco “highlighted the immense power of social media which allows consumers to react immediately, and even worse, while they are still angry. From a marketing point of view this promotion was ill-conceived and was quite clearly begging disaster.”