Chipotle said it has maximized the total number of followers it can have on the latest app to gain popularity, BeReal.
“It’s something that’s really taken off lately, I understand that we’ve maxed out all of our followers,” CEO Brian Niccol said on the social media app at the Yahoo Finance All Markets Summit. “We have to continue to figure this out. how we develop that platform.”
Yahoo Finance contacted BeReal for comment, but the company was unable to clarify how many followers the maximum amount is.
Founded by former GoPro employees Alexis Barreyat and Kévin Per, the app launched in December 201[ads1]9. The app gained popularity in spring 2022 and reached 53 million downloads worldwide with 14.7 million in September 2022 alone, according to Consumer Intelligence data platform Sensor Tower.
What keeps BeReal users on the edge of their seats is that they don’t know what time of day the social media platform will ask them to take a photo, only allowing a 2-minute window to be realistic with limited time to prepare and something. difficult for businesses to navigate.
In May, Chipotle launched a promotion on its BeReal account for customers to use the promo code FORREAL to get access to a free entrée for the first 100 people to join. It was reportedly gone in almost 30 minutes.
For its annual Boorito celebration on Halloween, fans are encouraged to take a BeReal photo in costume at a Chipotle restaurant on Oct. 31 and post it on BeReal with the hashtag #booritosweepstakes for a chance to win free burritos for a year.
Niccol sees BeReal, along with other social media platforms, as a key way to connect with consumers, especially younger ones, and be a part of current trends, adding that Chipotle customers typically “skew younger.”
“We want to be a brand that is visible, we want to be a brand that leads culture, and also in culture, social media applications, like BeReal, are part of that.”
The need to stay ahead of the curve and listen to where the customers are going: CEO
BeReal is just a small part of Chipotle’s social media presence. The fast-casual chain boasts 2 million followers on TikTok, lagging behind some of its competitors, including Taco Bell and McDonald’s, both with 2.3 million followers, but ahead of Wendy’s with 1.3 million.
On Instagram and Twitter, Chipotle has 1.1 million followers.
The brand was also named the “most preferred at Hispanic food levels across both upper-income and middle-income teens” in Piper Sandler’s semi-annual survey. Piper Sandler CEO Nicole Miller Regan called this a big opportunity to increase market share overall.
Niccol admits that it is important not only to try to stay ahead, but to keep an ear on the ground to see what happens next.
“We’re very fortunate to have, I think, one of the best groups of leaders driving our social media efforts, our digital efforts, and just really researching where young people are going so that hopefully sometimes we’re ahead of them and then other times they lead us to where we need to be,” Niccol said.
Roblox is another tactic Chipotle is using to capture audiences and help them experience the brand in a different way, almost like the Chipotle Grill Stimulator for the Garlic Guajillo Steak launch. Niccol says using the platform is part of a larger experiment to see what works.
“Look, we’re always going to experiment and that’s partly what we’re doing with Roblox, this is more about experimenting so we can understand where potential future sales can come from and as a minimum right now, that’s definitely right place to be to communicate with young people,” he explains.
The direct correlation of the metaverse on the company’s bottom line is largely unknown right now.
“It’s hard to like put it into dollars and actual sales, it’s a lot more to do with brand relevance … being visible and then playing a role in people every day,” Niccol emphasized.
Cowen Sr. Research analyst Doug Creutz agreed in a recent interview with Yahoo Finance, noting that he’s not sure if Roblox is the right place for big brands like Chipotle or Walmart to be if they’re looking for profitable returns.
“I don’t know that kids are really that excited about going to a virtual Chipotle or a virtual Walmart. I think they’d rather play games,” Creutz said.
Chipotle is expected to report third-quarter 2022 results on Oct. 25 after noon. So far this year, the shares are down almost 12 percent.
Brooke DiPalma is a reporter for Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter at @BrookeDiPalma or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Follow Yahoo Finance on Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Facebook, Flip boardand LinkedIn.