The power of Queen Bee.
Beyoncé‘s surprise track and video to “Formation,” which she performed at Superbowl 50’s half time show, has brought good fortune to seafood chain Red Lobster, as sales surged 33 percent after the track’s release in one day.
Despite fans flocking to their nearest Red Lobster restaurant for the all-you-can-eat Cheddar “Bey” Biscuits, tweeters were initially side-eyeing the chain’s Twitter account, as they were delayed in responding to Bey’s free publicity and endorsement. CEO Kim Lopdrup told USA Today:
“We had nothing to do with the song and had no advance knowledge of it being released. We learned about it by seeing that we were trending as number one on Twitter, which is probably the first time that has ever happened.”
Sales continued to spike after the song’s Saturday debut, even through Monday [February 8]. Company spokeswoman Erica Ettori says the sales increase can also likely be attributed to their new remixed Lobsterfest menu, when sales are usually higher when they run specials, including CrabFest, in addition to better weather compared to last year.
“We are absolutely delighted with what we saw over the weekend, particularly the consumer sentiment that we saw expressed,” Kim Lopdrup, CEO of Red Lobster, told CNBC. “It’s clear Beyoncé has helped create some Red Lobster fans, and we are very grateful to her for that.” The chain’s wildly popular alcoholic drink, Bay Breeze, are now called “Bey” Breezes.
Red Lobster, which was sold by Darden Restaurants in July of 2014 after suffering ongoing declines in sales, was a trending topic for the first time in Twitter history, with over 300,000 mentions, 14,200 likes and 13,600 retweets — the most the company has ever received.