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Twitter verifies Reading's Steak-umm after months-long campaign for legitimacy

The #VerifySteakUmm effort was a success.

Nathan Allebach, left, and Jesse Bender at a computer monitor with the Twitter account for Steakumm at Allebach Communications.
Nathan Allebach, left, and Jesse Bender at a computer monitor with the Twitter account for Steakumm at Allebach Communications.Read moreWILLIAM THOMAS CAIN / For The Philadelphia Inquirer

After months of absurdist humor, bizarre memes and a demanding hashtag, Steak-umm finally saw the fruits of its labor Monday: Twitter verification.

The frozen sliced steak brand owned by Reading-based Quaker Maid Meats launched a campaign nearly four months ago to get a blue check mark on its Twitter profile, a badge of legitimacy that the social media company grants to company brands, journalists, and famous people. A tweet sent this morning from @steak_umm indicated that Twitter finally had granted verified status — the #VerifySteakUmm effort was a success.

The stunt to get Steak-umm verified was all part of the advertising account's freewheeling, stream-of-consciousness tone. Nathan Allebach, the social-media coordinator for Allebach Communications, a food marketing and advertising agency based in Souderton, Montgomery County, has cultivated that tone account since August. Since then, it has amassed a cult-like audience and now has more than 12,000 followers — six times what it had on Nov. 1 — largely through round-the-clock, one-on-one interactions with consumers.

The account frequently personifies beef, and its tweets range from inspirational to trollish. Most lack punctuation, and many include silly altered images or doctored videos.

There was also a Twitter beef with Wendy's this month, which prompted an almost-apology from the fast food burger chain.

Representatives from Allebach requested verified status on multiple occasions, according to Allebach, who is 26, and was denied each time — until now. Twitter suspended its verification program in November pending a review after the company was criticized widely for granting verified status to prominent white supremacists, but it started quietly verifying accounts again in January.

Allebach said Monday the team was "beefstorming" ideas for how to move forward post-verification, including a possible celebratory event. What they know for sure is that they want to thank their loyal following.

"We want to give back to the followers," he said. "The past few months, it's been all about them."