The food fight of the decade has started, and so far, ALDI is winning.

Colin vs. Cuthbert: battle of the caterpillar cakes

If you haven’t heard about the Colin vs. Cuthbert, battle of the caterpillars by now, then you might have been living under a rock, or you just might not have social media, one of the two. But to recap, Marks and Spencer are suing ALDI, whose Cuthbert the Caterpillar cake is too similar to Marks and Spencer’s legendary Colin the Caterpillar.

Social media management at its finest

Now, you might be thinking, ‘Why is this newsworthy?’ and the truth is, in the grand scheme of things it isn’t. However, it is a demonstration of social media management at its finest.

In response to the high court case, ALDI rephrased their rival’s catchphrase, tweeting ‘This is not just any court case, this is… #FreeCuthbert’, a tweet that has accumulated over 70,000 likes and 10,000 retweets. This has led to over a 2000% increase in the brand’s engagement rate on Twitter, with their tweets going viral minutes after they are posted. It has also given the case national attention.

ALDI has used this situation to accentuate their brand personality, adding light-hearted humour to relate to their audience and to gain public favour over M&S. When a humorous tone of voice is done well, it can benefit a brand massively. But there is a fine line, so when should a brand be humorous?

Brand tone of voice

These are the things you should consider in your brand’s social media tone of voice:

  1. Your target market – Who are you trying to appeal to? If you are trying to sell funeral plans to the over 70s, you should probably avoid the humorous posts. It’s all about knowing your audience inside and out. Who is your priority audience? How old are they? What do they do as a career? What other brands are they following?
  2. Your brand – A law firm’s tone of voice and a supermarket’s tone of voice will be very different. It’s simple if your brand is corporate or serious, then you should stick to that tone of voice. If your brand is young and fun, then make sure that is reflected in your social media!
  3. Your goals – What is the purpose of your social media? Is it to build brand awareness, generate leads, to increase revenue? What are you using social media for and why?

Whilst Colin the Caterpillar may have been Britain’s most loved caterpillar cake, ALDI’s flawless demonstration of social media management has pushed Cuthbert up the ranks and no doubt led to an increase in revenue and brand awareness.

So, the question is, will you incorporate humour into your brand’s personality? Oh, and Colin vs. Cuthbert, who’s side are you on?

Need help with your social media marketing or finding the right tone of voice for your brand? Contact the team today.