Walmart’s new Twitter trash-talk strategy already paying off

LEGO was called out by the retail store

Walmart wants to get cheekier online.

As part of a new social media strategy, the retailer, which had a total revue of $124 billion in the first quarter of 2020, is adding some bite and looking to be more conversational by poking fun at its competitors.

“The ‘bantering’ is part of our strategy,” a statement sent to FOX BUsiness from Jodi Durkin, Walmart’s director of brand social, said. “When brands talk in a fun and playful way that does really well on social.”

“Hey, @LEGO_Group, those grocery bags look a little heavy. Maybe lose some snacks?” the brand wrote in a Twitter post last month. “Thanks but no thanks, we need enough for the Big Game AND @LEGOMastersFOX,” the LEGO Group later responded.

So far, the effort has generated success outside of just retweets.

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Downloads of Walmart’s mobile app, which lets shoppers make buys from their phones, have increased by 50 percent week-over-week, according to the company, and it is ranked the No. 2 shopping app in the Apple App Store, just behind Amazon.

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Ticker Security Last Change Change %
WMT WALMART, INC. 143.02 +0.28 +0.20%

As part of its plan, Walmart is training internal staff to understand its brand voice so they can be more reactive and engage in real time with customers, as well as how to take advantage of social trends, like the recent “broomstick challenge” that asks people to balance a broom upright. The brand tweeted about that challenge last week.

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The retailer’s move to be more interactive is not uncommon. Big brands like Wendy’s, Burger King and McDonald's have enjoyed similar strategies in recent months by taking shots at each other to promote new menu items and other offerings.

Walmart's stock is up 18 percent on the year.

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