M-Commotion: Seamless Chokes On Its Own Twitter ''Girls' Promo

Sometimes a second-screen promotion can be too successful. The app and online food ordering system Seamless, which merged last year with Grubhub, had to cough up regrets and apologies Sunday night as its Twitter promo attracted too many takers. Aimed at the Sunday season premiere of HBO's ‘Girls’ series, the company tweeted over the weekend a 15% off discount using the GIRLS15 code. Apparently the company overlooked that the promo might also reach far outside the cultish niche of the 20-something series. After all, there was a little football playoff and Golden Globes award on Sunday evening that may have sparked some takeout munchies.

By early evening, things started going down on the service and it joked on Twitter, “Someone left a hairdryer plugged in and broke some things. We are working on our GIRLS issues and will be back up ASAP.”



Shortly after, the jokes, if not the order, kept coming. “We survived a polar vortex, we shall overcome the GIRLS trouble as well.”

To the company's credit, they kept the apologies “native” insofar as they had the same self-effacing quality as the ‘Girls’ program that seemed to start it all. “For those having a slow response on the site, it's not you, it's us,” they quipped at one point. “Please bear with us as we fix ourselves so we can fix our relationship.”

It kept going like this for a few hours, even leading them to refer customers to sister app/site Grubhub at one point. About four hours into the outage and slowdown, the system had been rebooted and was back in business.

Grubhub spokesperson Abby Hunt tells Mobile Marketing Daily “We are still investigating what caused the issue, but it was a big night for TV overall – Golden Globes, ‘Girls’ etc. There is really no way we could attribute it to a specific television program or promo.”

The company says that typically it sees more than 40% of its orders come from mobile devices now.  

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