We love to venture into subreddits and find out what they think about popular brands and companies. Our latest experiment was to find out what are the worst chain restaurants according to the r/food subreddit.
r/Food responded: The Food subreddit has 360,000 subscribers who like food, so we thought this would be the perfect group to consult with. We received 21 upvotes (2 down) and 70 total comments. Here are the notable responses…
- Olive Garden was the top response with 26 upvotes (4 down) – “Olive Garden…all the breadsticks in the world cant make up for the fact that everything else on the menu sucks.”
- Applebees was a close second with 23 upvotes (2 down) – “Applebee’s. Nothing is made there. It’s removed from bags, reheated or fried, then put onto plates.” (However, a claimed Applebee’s chef refuted this argument – “I cook at an applebees, we make a TON of the stuff there, much of it every morning. Very little actually goes from bag to plate either, mostly just the fried stuff.”)
- The most controversial response was Taco Bell – “Taco Bell. Their food isn’t good and their absence would create a hole that Taco John’s would fill quite nicely (and with better quality).” This comment received 24 upvotes and 10 downvotes. It also drew 10 sub-comments, some very disagreeable.
- Burger King, Long John Silvers, Red Lobster all received honorable mention with 10+ upvotes each.
This experiment is another case study showing power of reddit as a feedback platform. Additionally, it identifies r/Food as community that can provide valuable feedback about chain restaurants that are available in most communities. Brand managers and marketers would be smart to take a look at r/food an other subreddits as opportunities to interact with a valuable segment of their customer base.
In the meantime, we’ll continue to ask reddit questions and explore the best ways to engage these communities.