How Social Media Revived the 57-Year-Old Tropical Hut
It all started with one tweet. On June 12, just over a week ago, an unassuming Twitter user posted photos of Tropical Hut’s Escolta branch, reminiscing about the glory days of the 57-year-old burger chain. Within hours, the simple tweet gathered a following, with many more Filipinos chiming in with their nostalgic memories of the family-friendly brand.
It was only a few decades ago when Tropical Hut was the hottest burger joint in town. Located in almost every major traffic area, Tropical Hut was mom and dad’s go-to restaurant to bring the kids, and many of us probably have memories of hanging around the restaurant’s tables. But over the years, Tropical Hut has receded in popularity, making way for countless competitors to enter the market. While other burger joints might dazzle with their creative dishes and aesthetic marketing, there’s one factor that no public relations or marketing expert can create out of thin air: nostalgia.
Just a few days after a netizen’s nostalgic tweet about Tropical Hut went viral, Tropical Hut’s official Twitter account made sure to thank social media for sharing their memories and appreciation. But it only snowballed from there—in the best way possible.
There’s nothing better than organic reach because, within days, Tropical Hut went from the last place you’d want to order from to the very first. On June 17, Grab all but confirmed that Tropical Hut was experiencing an all-time high in delivery orders, with Grab riders lining up at multiple Tropical Hut branches in the metro.
A viral tweet was enough to make hundreds if not thousands hungry for Tropical Hut’s famous Rancho Ranchero and sweet spaghetti. In fact, as of June 20, demand has been so high that select Tropical Hut items are now low on stocks and the brand is rushing to fulfill orders.
Between June 12 to June 18, when Tropical Hut first went viral, the brand grew its Facebook following by over 10,000 people, based on CrowdTangle Data. The following week from June 19 to June 25, Tropical Hut grew by 9,400 thousand followers.
And it was all because of one simple testimony. Tropical Hut’s viral revival is a lesson in social media marketing: You can have as many clickbait captions and aesthetic photos as you want, but nothing will ever be as effective as organic marketing coming from the testimony of happy and satisfied customers. In this age of digital saturation, marketing mayhem, and peak consumerism, customers want more than carefully curated feeds and ads. They want sincerity and authenticity, something Tropical Hut clearly has plenty of.
If you’re in the mood for more nostalgic treats from everyone’s childhood burger joint, here are some of the best-sellers at Tropical Hut.