Down with the kids? Don’t use #bae

January 23rd, 2015

It’s all well and good researching your audience, its needs, interests, proclivities and sense of humour etc etc, but talking like them? That’s a lexical step too far, according to one Twitter account.

@BrandsSayingBae is retweeting – can you guess? – those companies that use ‘bae’ in their tweets. No idea? According to this Wall Street Journal post, bae gained popularity in 2014 and is a:

term of endearment that often refers to one’s boyfriend or girlfriend. Bae can be aspirational — someone of romantic interest. The term has also inevitably evolved to apply to inanimate objects. On Instagram, a particularly mouthwatering plate of BBQ could be #bae, for example.

Regardless of what bae is or isn’t, or how soon it will enter the Oxford Dictionary to the praise of the BBC, using it is risky. At best, those brands using bae will seem like they’re trying to get down with the kids; at worst, their audience will see them as cynical and fake.

Exhibit #1.

bae1

Exhibit #2

bae2

So far @BrandsSayingBae has laid into serial abusers McDonalds, Burger King, Taco Bell and, of course, pun-loving Pizza Hut. And with more than 25,000 followers on the back of fewer than 50 tweets, the account has struck a chord among those sceptical of some brands’ marketing techniques.

But you do wonder when BAE Systems will join the party…

Rob Haynes, Content Desk and PCP.

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