A paid partnership between supermodel Gigi Hadid and franchise giant McDonald’s is calling the role of social media marketing into question.
Early this month, Hadid copped criticism for a promotional post she shared to her 47 million Instagram followers.
The seemingly innocent photo featured the supermodel eating McDonald’s French Fries at the Coachella music festival. However, social media users slammed the Vogue cover model for partnering with the brand.
Hadid’s caption “Pre-festival with McDonald’s yesterday fed & hydrated, thanks friends!” was the topic of much debate.
A barrage of comments flooded the post calling out Hadid for the partnership.
“I really do not understand why you would promote McDonalds. In fact, it utterly baffles me why an intelligent, well informed and influential person like yourself would what to be affiliated with such a company. Surely it can’t be for the money? There are so many other ways to be ‘fed and hydrated,” one comment liked by over 4600 users read.
The social media backlash proves that while McDonald’s has put significant time and money into promoting its healthy options, it still has an immense PR hurdle to overcome.
Gigi Hadid’s paid McDonald’s advertising campaign is a symbol of the transient nature of new media marketing. However, even traditional advertising is beginning to draw away from unhealthy fast-food chains.
On Sunday, the Queensland government banned junk food advertising across its government-owned outdoor spaces. State health minister Steven Miles said the move was in response to the state’s growing obesity rate, however implored fast-food chains to continue advertising healthy options.