How Brands Are Using Social Media to Make a Splash With Summer Fridays

Delta, Leinenkugel and Spotify roll out efforts

Google and Priceline.com surveyed 15,723 Americans last year and learned that just 8 percent take "Summer Fridays," or the privilege of getting a free day off—thanks, boss—or at least leaving between 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. on days like today. That small percentage, though, isn't stopping brands from digitally jumping into the theme. 

For instance, Delta this week announced a "Go Fridays" initiative, complete with a bot that will appear in New York-based companies' Slack channels. For the uninitiated, Slack is a workflow management system that businesses use to expedite internal communications and eliminate email backlog. Programmatic advertising company Spongecell, social news player NowThis and online mattress seller Casper are participating; their staffers will see messages from Delta's Slack bot, encouraging them to send an Out-of-Office auto-reply from their work email addresses.

"Delta will be giving some of New York's busiest people a chance to get out of the office and reboot," said Bill Betz, Delta's general manager, marketing communications.

The underlying message seems not-too-subtle: Hey, it's summertime. Get out of the office and get out of town—and buy a plane ticket to get where you are going!

Delta certainly isn't alone in attempting to capitalize on Summer Fridays.

Leinenkugel, for the second year in a row, is promoting an endeavor called #LeinieFriday, imploring business owners to let their employees off early on Fridays for the next few months. The Chippewa Falls, Wisc.-based brewery said in a press release it wants to "spark a national summer Friday revolution" and hosted more than 1,000 events in bars and restaurants across the country two weeks ago to kick off the campaign. 

The 150-year-old company also partnered with social drinking app Untappd to push the effort, offering users the chance to earn #LeinieFriday badges. The Untappd system works similarly to Swarm, rewarding people for checking in at bars. 

Then, Spotify has created a Summer Fridays channel for folks lounging by the pool or golfers getting swings in on the driving range. And Harry Caray's, a steakhouse and pub with eight locations in the Chicago area, is pushing the same theme in the coming weeks, while partnering with beers such as A-B InBev's Goose Island. 

Additionally, the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA) wants to get into the Summer Friday mix on Snapchat. R&R Partners, the LVCVA's ad agency, said Snapchat will introduce an office-themed live story soon, and the tourism marketer wants to buy ads in the channel to get people to jet off to Sin City on upcoming Friday mornings and afternoons. 

Venice, Calif.-based Snapchat didn't immediately respond to emailed questions about the live story.

"[Snapchat has] an editorial live story coming up about office games, so we think we may be able to hit a vacation days where we get consumers to come to Vegas," said Cyler Pennington, content director at R&R Partners.

Meanwhile, check out Leinenkugel's Summer Fridays video in the tweet below.