BuzzFeed Viral Tweet Report

Originally, I had planned to tweet using the “thank u, next” template in order to resonate with college kids across the country. However, upon reflection I found it very difficult to find three college traits that were connected to one another and would be applicable to everyone. Furthermore, I started to notice that the “thank u, next” wave had peaked and people were moving on to other trends. When I saw the new trending tweet format “don’t say it” had started to gain traction, I went to work thinking of a funny twist on it that people would appreciate. This tweet format focuses on an everyday scenario where someone’s brain repeatedly tells them “don’t do it” and then they do or say something cringeworthy. As a fan of simple jokes, I played on the classic “do you smell updog?” “what’s updog?” “not much, how about you?” joke. While I thought I could capitalize on the early development of this tweet format to go viral, I did not want to ditch my original tweet without knowing that I would be successful, so I conducted some primary research where I asked people to compare my new idea with the original one. Ultimately, the majority of people I spoke with said they would hit like on my version of “don’t say it” over that of “thank u, next” so I went with the up and coming tweet format.

The goal of my social media marketing plan was to go viral on Twitter and try to get reposted onto BuzzFeed’s Instagram account. In so doing, my objective was to get 20 engagements so I would have a better chance of getting noticed by BuzzFeed. I broke down my engagement goals based off the success of my original “thank u, next” tweet. Since I was expecting my new tweet to do better, I planned to receive 10 detail expands, 5 likes, 2 retweets and 3 profile clicks. In order to accomplish this, my strategy was to space out my distribution plan, so as to keep my tweet relevant over the course of the week. 

The results were both successful and disappointing, for my post received far more than 20 engagements but it was not shared on BuzzFeed’s Instagram. Over the course of the week, I received 106 engagements. It breaks down into: 66 detail expands, 17 likes, 15 profile clicks, 7 retweets, and 1 reply. Moreover, I was not retweeted by any of the accounts on my distribution plan. Rather than quote tweeting at the different accounts, I sent them a direct message with the hope that my tweet would get shared because it is more personal than just @ing them. I was very confident that the joke-related Twitter accounts would like my tweet because it fit in line with their content. However, they did not seem to retweet or share fan submissions often so it is possible that posting my tweet would have been off brand for them. Thus, if I am attempting to get a post shared in the future I will make sure that the accounts I reach out to actively post fan submissions. 

The majority of my success came from engagements within my personal network trickling into that of others. As my friends liked, retweeted, and replied to my post, it was made visible to their followers who then did the same. Ultimately, I am happy with my tweet because it surpassed my engagement goal by an overwhelming amount. I understand that it is not easy to get shared on BuzzFeed’s Instagram, or even by niche Twitter accounts, but I will use what I have learned to develop higher quality posts and distribution plans in the future. 



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