3 lessons from Glad’s influencer debacle

The plastic-wrap maker sponsored a dinner in Chicago for influencers and food writers to gain publicity. However, some felt misled—and the agency behind the stunt is apologizing.

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One might think Glad would know how to be transparent.

Its marketing agency, though, crafted a “gotcha” social media stunt that backfired—hurting the plastic-wrap maker, the agency itself and a critically acclaimed Chicago restaurant.

The Chicago Tribune reported:

On Monday, Giant hosted an invite-only dinner dubbed Three Moons. Attendees included a few people in the media and some social media influencers over two seatings. At the end of the first one, the final course arrived covered in Glad Press’n Seal. The guests were told that everything they had eaten that night had been made three days previously, kept refrigerated and wrapped in the sealing product.

In other words, the dinner was a commercial, or intended to be — all the centerpieces in the middle of the table concealed cameras filming reactions from the guests. And it was this otherwise simple “gotcha” element that exploded into a snake-eating-its-tail morality tale about ethics and transparency in food media, among influencers, ad agencies, journalists and restaurants.

The influencers and journalists who attended weren’t pleased with the bait-and-switch.


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