Marketers respond to #WorldRecordEgg with humor and pleas for attention

As the viral Instagram post made waves online, many organizations hoped to capture a fraction of that attention. Some were more successful than others.

World record egg marketing

An egg carries the title for the most-liked post on Instagram, and social media marketers are scrambling to jump on the bandwagon.

At time of publishing, the photo has more than 45.15 million Instagram “likes”:

Guinness World Records reported:

The image was uploaded by the account ‘world_record_egg’ on Friday 4 January, posted with the caption: “Let’s set a world record together and get the most liked post on Instagram. Beating the current world record held by Kylie Jenner (18 million)! We got this.”

… Ten days later on Monday 14 January, the photo of the egg duly surpassed the reality TV star’s total, reaching 30.5 million likes during that afternoon.

As social media users continue to talk about the new viral sensation, many social media marketers jumped at the chance to enter the conversation. Some, including those at Tinder and Busch Beer, kept things lighthearted:

Steak-umm and Burger King compared their social media profiles, which paled in comparison:

Uber Eats made a joke about social media content:

Pop-Tarts’ social media team wrote a poem about the egg’s virality:

The moves show how essential humor has become for organizations looking to increase engagement on social media.

Dakota Shane, co-founder of Copy Buffs, wrote on Inc.:

… If it wasn’t already clear enough from viral accounts and campaigns like Wendy’s Twitter account (which jokingly insults its fans on a regular basis), or the Kickstarter campaign that raised over $50,000 for its creator to make a potato salad, this Kylie vs. egg battle illustrates how consumers are absolutely loving brands that have a good sense of humor.

Gone are the days when stale and unrelatable brands were the gold standard. People want to see the human side of brands, particularly younger audiences like Millennials and Gen Z.

Though many brand managers took the humor route, many social media teams couldn’t resist newsjacking to promote their own offerings.

Benefit Cosmetics, Tarte Cosmetics and L.A. Girl Cosmetics used the egg’s shape and color to highlight their products:

George RR Martin, The Rowling Library and Universal Orlando highlighted other famous eggs from “Game of Thrones,” “Harry Potter” and “Jurassic Park”:

White Castle, Mike’s Hard Lemonade, Target and Smok Technology were a few organizations reaching (some more than others) for ways to associate the trend with their brands:

OnePlus was more straightforward and simply asked followers to like its own egg to “break the internet”:

So far, OnePlus’ request has not been successful.

Not all branded tweets and Instagram posts tying the egg’s success to their own organizations promoted consumer products and services, however.

Medscape used the egg for a public service announcement for diabetes, while (RED) highlighted its campaign to provide HIV medication:

Brands’ social media teams responding to popular trends and news is a common tactic, but savvy digital communicators are honing their efforts by focusing on follower interaction and humorous, genuine conversation.

In contrast, blatant marketing messages and attempts to steal the limelight are becoming more tired among social media users inundated with branded content across social media platforms.

What do you think about brand managers’ responses to Instagram’s viral egg, Ragan/PR Daily readers?

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