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The Tweet Heard Around the World OR – Why Viral Isn’t a Strategy

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The Tweet Heard Around the World OR – Why Viral Isn’t a Strategy

I have a tweet that has been viewed almost 700,000 times (when I checked for this article), Liked over 4,000 times, and retweeted over 1,600 times. This resulted in over 200 people looking at my profile and 3 new followers. No inquiries to me for work, no surge to the Hunter & Bard website, no leads. No requests to be on any Late Night Shows. Yes, it went viral, yes I was copied by Jimmy Fallon (see below – I was told mine was funnier). My tweet was a classic case of what goes viral, and the reason it went viral is exactly why viral isn’t a strategy for most enterprise companies that sell business-to-business.

What Happened? 

It was the Apple Announcement for the new watch and new iPhones. I’m an Apple Fan and I’ve been very excited to hear about the new iPhones. The rumors going around about the X before the launch made it sound larger than life. I’m not going to comment on the actual announcement, but suffice it to say Apple will be getting more of my money (that new watch!!! And the iPhone X – it’s time to retire my iPhone 6+, I haven’t succumbed to the ear-pods, yet). It’s an eco-system I like and am happy to be a part of.

I was Live-Tweeting the event and the announcement of the glass front and back was made. I tweeted the first thing that came to mind:

Here’s what Fallon had on his show later that night:

(See? Mine is funnier.)

I tweeted a lot of things during the event. I didn’t think much about what I was tweeting since really, who the hell am I and why should anyone care about my comments?

Timing is Everything

My tweet resonated. It started getting retweeted and Liked. Then it got more. I mean really, it’s the first thing that comes to mind for a lot of people when you hear the new iPhones have a glass front and back. I’m still getting one, mind. I’m just shelling out for Apple Care this time as well – because as much as they say it’s the strongest glass available – I’ll still find a way to destroy it.

The other reasons why the Tweet went viral:

  1. It’s funny
  2. It’s true (that doesn’t mean I won’t be buying one)
  3. It’s relatable – Do you know many people who have never broken their screen?
  4. It’s negative – the phrase “bad news moves fast” exists for a reason
  5. It’s not about me, or my company – it’s not self-promotional in any way
  6. It doesn’t educate you on anything
  7. It’s just funny

What Was My Goal?

When you’re doing active marketing you need to have a goal. I wasn’t actively marketing. I was enjoying myself online while listening to the Apple Announcements. I had no goal. I was Live Tweeting because it’s fun and I haven’t done it in years. I simply wanted to enjoy myself, and making the occasional smart-aleck comment is one of the ways I do that. Yes, I’m fairly easily entertained.

Should every personal tweet have a goal? That’s a debate, but generally I would say No. Having a personal account presumes that some of the tweets will be personal. Also, people want to see your personality and opinions. Having personal opinions shows you’re not afraid to voice said opinions and builds trust.

Plus, my reputation for speaking my mind is already fairly well established. No one takes Hunter & Bard for us to be “Yes-Men” (especially since we’re mainly women… – should it be “Yes-People”?)

Although to be fair, I would have loved my only viral tweet to have been about something positive, like this tweet:

<blockquote class=”twitter-tweet” data-lang=”en”><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”>BY HAND. <br><br>SHE CALCULATED ROCKET TRAJECTORIES BY HAND.<br><br>BUZZ ALDRIN TRUSTED NO-ONE ELSE, NOT EVEN THEIR COMPUTERS. <a href=”https://t.co/liVtd8cX8c”>https://t.co/liVtd8cX8c</a></p>&mdash; Oli Young 🏳️‍🌈 (@oliyoung) <a href=”https://twitter.com/oliyoung/status/901061078313975809″>August 25, 2017</a></blockquote>

<script async src=”//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js” charset=”utf-8″></script>

I Have a Business – Did the Viral Tweet Help It?


The jury is still out. 200 people viewed my profile after – and Hunter & Bard is listed there. It’s an Apple event, so people would only be watching if they have an interest in Apple and tech, one would assume most of those people are in tech. Have I felt any changes in interest since? Hard to say since I’ve also spoken at Content Marketing World and Confluence since.