As Twitter buzzed with news of white smoke pouring from the Sistine Chapel and the selection of Pope Francis
, who was archbishop of Buenos Aires, fast feeder Carl’s Jr. tried to capitalize on the news by tweeting:
The messages were tweeted hundreds of times, but received some backlash from people who thought the tweets were in poor taste.
Carl’s Jr. is following the trend of real-time marketing, in which brands try to harness the attention of a breaking news event. Oreo did it masterfully
during the Super Bowl power outage.
RELATED: The communication challenges facing Pope Francis
A version of this story first appeared on the author's blog.