How did Grubhub manage to profit over a “bad commercial”?

Grubhub released its delivery dance commercial, which, despite the initial criticism, has showcased that a “bad commercial” can spark viral social media memes. 

In late 2020, online delivery company, Grubhub, released a commercial promoting its services. The commercial was arguably regarded as one of the most annoying commercials to have been released in 2020 by people on social media. The criticism was not over the quality of the commercial, but rather, the annoyance was over the portrayal of the animated characters in the commercial.

The commercial is based on happy customers that receive their food from Grubhub performing the delivery dance. Firstly, some problematised the song chosen for the commercial, Soy Yo by Bomba Estéreo. Secondly, others highlighted the food that people were performing the delivery dance over, such as salads and plain chicken burgers.

Lastly, the excitement and animation of the characters in the commercial were too far-fetched for some. More so considering that the food that was delivered was not actual junk food, which is understood as bad for an individual’s health but satisfactory when indulging. While the commercial could have been scrapped by the company, considering the ridicule it faced, Grubhub surprised many when it re-purposed the ad into social media content. The company started using scenes from the ad as memes, which have been garnering much popularity ever since.

Moreover, the fact that it was initially considered a “bad commercial” is the gold of re-purposing the commercial into memes. This is because memes do two things; make reference to something, and turn the initial context into comic relief. To date, the company still uses a compilation of memes derived from the commercial as part of its promotional collateral on social media.