RadioShack SMM exposed…
By Tommy Clark
<aside> 💡 relevant platform updates and/or social media news, with your take on how it will affect the day-to-day of the typical social media manager.
1) So, who’s behind the RadioShack Twitter nightmare?
TLDR: RadioShack has gone rogue on Twitter over the past few weeks. But you probably already knew that.
And if you didn’t here’s some of the absurdity you missed. I apologize in advance for how uncomfortable you might feel after reading this…
There’s more, but I’ll spare you the cringe. Jack Appleby wrote a good deep dive on the topic if you want the details.
Up until this week, the man behind this fiasco remained a mystery.
But… that mystery was solved. His name is Ábel Czupor, and he came forward on Tuesday via this article.
The “takeaways” (you’ll see why I put that in quotations) 👇
According to Czupor, “You really have to make an impression in order to basically get known with youngsters.”
Honestly, that sentence should tell you everything about the level of detail (or lack of) that went into this social ‘strategy.’
Nonetheless, let’s continue…
How did Czupor go about making this iMPresSsiON on ‘youngsters?’
“If you look at any corporate accounts, all of them are pretty boring … That is not something people really engage with; that’s more content people will be reading but not talking about.”
Apparently, the opposite of boring is absolutely unhinged. Hm.
Let’s talk numbers. ‘Cause who knows… I might be wrong about Ábel’s master plan.
In the interview, Czupor reports that RadioShack has pulled:
- 100M impressions
- 30M profile visits
- 170K new followers
This was the strategy, for better or for worse:
That little (kind of important) piece of the puzzle — profit — is missing from the stats.
Yet, Czupor maintains an almost delusional confidence that this shock value campaign was a success.
Was it though? I have some thoughts… (you probably know where this is going)
Tommy’s Take: You subscribe to this for honest, practical social media advice — so I’m not going to pull any punches here.
If you’re running a brand social media account: do not copy this strategy.
It’s lazy. It’s unprofessional. And most of all… it’s probably not successful.
RadioShack’s social media problem stems from a misunderstanding of what ‘success’ on social media looks like.
Yes. Engagement matters. A lot. Follower growth is also a good metric to track.
Here’s the problem. Engagement and follower growth in a vacuum mean nothing without an incremental increase in revenue. Without revenue… it’s all hype and vanity.
I’m skeptical that RadioShack’s harsh approach to social has led to significant revenue increases, since Czupor led with stats like impressions, profile visits, and follower count.
(Also… the site that ‘exclusive’ article came from? Probably the most obscure, never-heard-of-it website I’ve seen in my lift. Kinda sketchy.)
But Tommy, I thought you promote shtposting from the brand account… what’s the deal?*
Yeah. You can shtpost without being an immature dckhead.
(Lots of censoring today, huh?)
Memes and humor are a great way to grab attention.
But memes don’t have to be immature. Memes don’t have to be degrading.
It’s tempting to go to the dark side. The internet seemingly ‘rewards’ the most absurd, unhinged content with engagement. Look at the Radioshack numbers.
I’d urge you to reconsider, though. It doesn’t have to be this way.
Memes can also be a great way to cultivate positivity and lightheartedness around your brand.
They can build brand equity, rather than burning it all down.
They can build community, rather than starting an internet-wide firestorm of horny jokes that only a teen with a questionable sense of humor would find funny.
I like to think we’ve done a good job of using memes for good at Triple Whale. And there are countless other examples of talented SMMs who have done the same.
Once you have the attention from memes, there has to be a logical step step.
Where are you directing that attention?
How are you guiding the customer closer to the purchase?
I think we can agree on this. The jump from “marry a squirter” to “buy our merch” is a wide one…
(understatement of the year candidate right there)
Czupor claims, “The squirters definitely made an impression on people.”
Ugh. Well, yeah. But is that the type of impression you want your brand to make?
Most people who do engage with RadioShack because their content is ‘edgy’ will stop there. Are those the type of ‘youngsters’ you want to attract to your brand?
Truth is… if your memes and sh*tposting are unrelated to the product you sell, you’ll end up with vanity metrics.
(plus a tarnished brand reputation)
And to all the SMMs reading this, you can do better than that. I know you can.
Now, in other news…
2) Another Instagram feed update … ugh.
TLDR: According to this TikTok video from Later, some Instagram users reported seeing a new feed laying today.
A new aspect ratio. Instead of 1×1 or 9×16… it’s now 4×5.
Tommy’s Take: Instagram is still having an identity crisis.
It’s kinda like watching a friend who lives their life based on what’s “cool.” They copy what’s trending now (clothes, hairstyles, even tattoos) in an attempt to remain relevant.
IG is that troubled friend. And I hope they get their life figured out soon.
How does this potential update after you as an SMM?
Probably not much. If this does get rolled out worldwide, just be aware of safe zones in your creative.
Don’t put important elements in areas of the screen that would get cut off in a 4×5 aspect ratio.
Also, if you’re planning thumbnails for your videos, the change in aspect ratio might also influence your design choices.
I wouldn’t lose too much sleep over it, though.
But I do hope Instagram figures their sh*t out soon.
Here was the TLDR on my opinion from that thread:
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<aside> 💡 Breaking down a viral meme or post and why you think it did well. Could be a good conversation starter as well, generating replies to the email
I went kinda viral this week. And I called my shot:
Excuse the language (sorry mom). Today I’m gonna break down why this thread went viral.
Yes, the thread is on my personal account. But you can (and should) apply some of these principles to your brand account.
1 – Trend jacking: Viral events within your industry are prime opportunities for viral content.
Speed matters here. Had I waited another week to get this out… it wouldn’t have gone viral.
So there I was, at 11:54pm on a Sunday night writing an analysis on a children’s movie’s TikTok strategy while listening to classical music.
It was a vibe.
2 – Strong hook: The first tweet in a thread is the most important. Same as the headline on a landing page.
If you’ve read any book on copywriting, you the rule — the goal of the first sentence is to get the reader to read the second sentence. The goal of the first tweet is to get the reader to move on to the second tweet.
How did I do this?
USE EYE CATCHING STATISTICS: Specifically, large sums of money. Whether you like it or not… it works.
Minions brought in $202M its first weekend. So I used that to my advantage. I followed that up with another wild number — 8.2B views on TikTok. The readers mind is curious now…
(Bonus tip: get ultra-specific with the numbers in your copy. 202,000,000 is better than ~200,000,000 million. Makes it more believable to the reader)
After the stats, I made a strong claim:
“Minions: The Rise of Gru has taken over the box office by taking over social media”
Perhaps, it was too strong. I got some pushback on that part from some people… but such is the game of Twitter threads.
CREATE CURIOSITY: To round out the hook, I opened a curiosity gap:
“Here’s the fascinating (and hilarious) story of how it happened:”
A few things to point out here…
The statistics and the bold claim already created curiosity. The job of the last sentence is to open the curiosity gap even larger, and seamlessly lead into the second tweet…
To do this, I framed the thread as a “fascinating (and hilarious)” story. Makes you wonder, no?
And the final detail… I used a colon instead of a period to leave the tweet open ended and move the reader into the second tweet.
Actually, I lied. There’s one more key to a strong hook.
USE RELEVANT IMAGES: Images should support your copy and stop the scroll.
Not every thread needs one. There are countless examples of viral thread without images.
But some of the best thread writers on Twitter like Trung Phan and Wolf of Franchises use images in their hook tweets. There’s a reason they do this.
It increases engagement rate and stops the scroll more. This is especially helpful when you aren’t known as a create, but the subject you’re talking about is.
Ex: Nobody (relatively speaking) knows me. But they do know about the Minions movie.
Try to use vibrant, colorful images when you can. Bonus points if you work some photoshop magic to add some extra touches to it (kinda like a YouTube thumbnail).
When your copy and your image selection are on point, your hook is golden.
3 – Keep the curiosity gap open: Remember the golden rule of the hook tweet?
Yeah. Get the reader to the second tweet.
What’s the golden rule of the second tweet?
You guessed it. Get the reader to the third tweet.
And so on… but how?
- make your tweets easy to scan
- keep the curiosity gap open
To make your tweets easy to scan:
- use bullet points (like this)
- avoid large blocks of text (those scare the reader)
- support with relevant images
Here’s any example:
To keep the curiosity gap open, end most of your tweets with an open loop.
Here’s an example of that in action:
The “then this happened…” makes the reader move on to the next tweet seamlessly.
Don’t use this strategy too many times in one thread. But placed strategically, it helps create what master copywriters call “the slippery slope.”
4 – Timing the thread: There’s no perfect time. But some times are better than others.
All of the top creators I’ve spoken to recommend posting threads mid-morning.
Anywhere from ~9am-12pm CST seems to be fine, if you have a US audience. There’s no ‘exact’ time within this window.
If you’re international it could look different.
The takeaway here is to post when your audience is active. Any easy way to figure this out is to go to Twitter Media Studio and look at your audience insights. You’ll see something like this:
Look at when your audience is active. Schedule your thread accordingly.
Don’t over complicate it.
5) Get early momentum: Don’t be afraid to plug yourself. I knew this thread was going to be good, so I was hitting up my homies asking them to engage with it.
Here’s the dirty truth: all your favorite creators do it.
You should too — especially if you believe in your work (if you don’t… WYD?!)
One of the cool parts about creating with Workweek is that I have access to a powerful network of creators to help amplify my work. That 110% influenced this thread’s performance.
Don’t have access to that type of network?
No stress. You can apply this principles on a smaller scale. With any account.
For your personal account: hit up friends, family, fellow creators when you drop an important post and ask them to engage. Again… get past the cringe.
Just don’t do it too often. I trust you to read the room.
For your brand account: encourage your team members to engage with company posts. Not everyone will. That’s fine. But if you can get a handful of employees to engage with a post, you’re giving it a better chance to succeed.
This type of scrappy behavior is necessary when you don’t have a massive account with loads of brand recognition. If you’re confident in your content… don’t feel bad about asking for some love.
I’ve been there. I’m still there. And I salute you 💯
BONUS TIP: Luck.
Yeah. It’s the truth.
Whoever says otherwise is lying to you. I was confident this thread would do well, but I had no idea it would crush like that.
Always gotta keep it real.
The good thing?
When you take enough shots (and follow best practices) your analytics will trend up and to the right 📈
A viral hit here and there will happen (viral is relative to your niche), but consistent growth following fundamentals is the goal.
Now, for this week’s can’t miss social resources 👇