“Humor is a spontaneous, wonderful bit of an outburst that just comes. It’s unbridled, its unplanned, it’s full of surprises.” ― Erma Bombeck
Plan, plan, plan. Social media seems to be obsessed with planning. The problem with planning is life happens.
Some posts can be keyword analyzed, penciled into your editorial calendar, and scheduled three months in advance. There’s no harm in planning. In many ways, planning gives us room for spontaneity.
All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy
The idiomatic proverb rings true with planning and spontaneity.
Plan your campaign to the nth degree, that’s totally acceptable. But you should be ready for a bit of fun, too. Oreo was and it put real-time marketing in the front of all of our minds.
Dunking in the Dark
Oreo, as far as big brands go, is the only big brand whose spontaneous tweet really made a mark in my mind. I realize it’s old news by now, but the timing was perfect. I literally saw the tweet before my husband could come in from the other room to tell me the power went out.
I know what you’re thinking. You’re a real person not Oreo waiting for a pop-culture fumble to promote your iconic cookie. How can spontaneity (real-time marketing) translate into your life?
Think for a moment. What memories survive when you recollect gatherings with friends? Are they the planned ones? No. It’s the unexpected.
- It’s when you photobomb your friends for the first time and it’s the best one ever.
- It’s when you’re looking for a conference and you suddenly say, “I see hipsters. We must be here,” followed by an eruption of laughter only comparable to Mount St. Helens.
- It’s when you make a meme out of yourself.
Make a Fool of Yourself
Sure, humor takes a bit of personal courage and humility, especially if you intend upon being the butt of your joke.
Being Irish, I wore green for St. Patrick’s Day and posted a selfie. My pal, Linda Snell, made a comment about how she felt compelled to add a rainbow and shamrocks.
Being in a quirky mood, I had my coworker take a photo of me, hands held out flat, so she could add said rainbow. I posted it on Facebook with the challenge.
Within five minutes she posted this:
It was so funny, but my coworkers said it was missing a unicorn (I always say ‘unicorns and rainbows’ as a generic happy place) and a leprechaun.
Five minutes later she posted this.
Of course, I made that my cover photo.
Then my friend Peter Woolvett, joined in and posted.
These days user-generated content (UGC) is like gold to marketers. I was willing to make a fool out of myself for a few laughs. It gave us the opportunity to exercise our creativity, bond through laughter, and entertain others. As a bonus, it became fodder for this blog post. Win-Win-Win-Win.
So, have I totally lost it now?
Are you willing to be spontaneous or does fear hold you back?
Tell me in the comments or send me a tweet.