January 4th, 2019: @world_record_egg was created, posting a photo of an egg 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.” In a matter of days, the account grew support and easily surpassed Jenner’s record photo of her and the hands of her new baby, Stormi.
As of January 24th, 2019, the photo has 50.8 million likes and has gained 8.9 million followers. Even though it has claimed the top spot for most likes, the egg is not slowing down. It has, since its record photo, posted two photos showcasing that it is cracking slowly. These photos have racked up 5 million likes each on their own. Along with this, it has created limited-time merchandise for purchase with some of its profit going towards UK-based charities.
Our CEO, Christoph Kastenholz, talked with Independent about this phenomenon. He stated that “the egg now reaches five times as many people as an established brand.” With no signs of seeking any sponsorships (yet), he sees that the egg “could value one single post at £25,000 and possibly more.” This was at the time that it had 5.8 million followers, so that number has definitely increased as the likes continue to rise. And the original post? “Measured on that basis this post alone would be worth more than £250,000.”
This situation has everyone asking: what is the big deal about this egg?
To get a better idea of what this means, let’s look at a similar situation that’s been ongoing for quite some time. Currently, there is a battle on YouTube to keep content creator PewDiePie as the most subscribed to channel. This status is being challenged by T-Series, an Indian music record label and film production company, as they close in on surpassing his channel. Many YouTubers have voiced their support in keeping him on top; some have even gone as far as buying multiple billboards and radio advertisements under the saying “Subscribe to PewDiePie”. You can even live track the two channel’s subscriber counts on YouTube. PewDiePie has played into this as well. He related the egg meme back to him in a recent video saying if he could get all those people to subscribe to his channel, he could beat T-Series.
In simple: social media consumers love to support the average person in their success unlike a celebrity or company. Social media has moved into a market domain pushing products and sales through advertisements and sponsored content. When something out of the ordinary, like an egg, comes out with the goal to dethrone a major celebrity, people get a kick out of supporting it. Especially since it’s something as simple and funny as a lone egg, it gave the meaningless photo the drive to knock a powerhouse off the top.
Ishan Goel, the marketing guru that was the “gasoline” behind the promotion of the egg, spoke with DailyMail to discuss what the egg means. “The idea that an inanimate object can connect so many people is a testament to the fact that people love to root for the underdog.
Celebrities wield so much power and influence, and an egg uniting so many people is a powerful commentary on social media’s impact on society today. Social media has given celebrities this sort of omnipotence.” If consumers are given the opportunity to outdo a celebrity with the power of a like, they will come together. It makes social media more light-hearted and less fabricated.
So what can we learn from this when it comes to creating a campaign? You need to have something that stands out and makes a statement. Something with a simple mission can have the largest impact on users. Building a community with a common aspect is a great way to join consumers together and market a brand. Brands have seen success in having a community of people that are passionate about their mission or goal, boosting their revenue as they invest in it.
Also, it’s important to consider the timing, placement, and influencers you’re tapping into when crafting your campaign. Instead of going for an A-list celebrity, consider finding influencers with a smaller, more intimate connection with their followings to promote your products.
What will be revealed in the egg? How long will it take for this mystery to crack? Who is the person behind this master plan? Only time will tell as the egg reveals more to the public.