Monday, 23 January 2017

The week I missed a week

Last week was extraordinary. My son lost his first tooth and he came home from school delighted that he was going to get a fiver. He was convinced about this fiver. No matter what we said to suggest that five pounds might not be on the cards, he wouldn’t have it. So I wrote him a letter from the Tooth Fairy, snapped it quickly, and popped it on Facebook to give my family a laugh.

A week later, my post had had 4000 shares. Heart FM had also got on it and posted the letter on their various local Facebook pages, so it had a few thousand more shares too. As Andy Warhol would no doubt have said, everyone goes viral once.

Anyway, my comping went out the window as I attempted to replicate the virality on Twitter by making an account for the Tooth Fairy. Truthfully, the endeavour met with limited success; however, it did align with one of my resolutions for this year: familiarising myself with Tweetdeck. I make no claim to have got it licked, but I’m certainly going to be better prepared for the next Twitter party.

The main thing I’ve learned from this experience is that when the time arrives for you to go viral, broadcasters and media companies will be in touch. They will ask to share your content - and promise to credit you. You will be flattered. Your content will spread farther and wider. However, you won’t see how far and how wide it has gone, because all those likes and shares will accrue to the media company, extending their “reach” - in other words, their currency with their advertisers. If reach is the sort of thing you need, then think carefully about your wording when you grant permission.

I had no way of monetising my Facebook post, so the matter was academic. My only condition was that Heart also tweeted a message about oral hygiene - which they did!

How does this relate to comping? Simple: I just wish I’d used the letter as a competition entry before posting it online - now that everyone’s seen it, I can’t imagine it has any comping currency at all!

EDIT: A company has just offered my lads a generous bunch of kit to encourage them to maintain good toothbrushing habits, so I'm counting that as a win! I'll tell you more about that soon...

1 comment:

  1. This is so funny - I hardly spend anytime on facebook (except for hopping on to do my comping) but my husband called me over to look at something the other day - it was this very letter!!! I had no idea it was you behind it. We've got a letter pre-planned for when the secondary school confirmations come out - so I will warn hubby in case that goes viral (I doubt it will but you never know).