Reflections on “the Tweet that took 2 months”

After reading my post about Social Media Douchebags, my friend Red sent me an article from Business Insider Australia titled “We Got A Look Inside The 45-Day Planning Process That Goes Into Creating A Single Corporate Tweet”. A lengthy title for a lengthy post.

In essence, the post describes how the copy for a single tweet is drafted, pitched, the media (image) designed, and the thorough approval process that accompanies the tweet before it’s born as a published piece of content.

As Business Insider Australia presented it, “Here’s the tweet that took two months:”

Now I don’t think it’s very kind on Huge, the agency who produced this lil’ labour of love, to present it quite so disparagingly.

The average internet-savvy, social media invested reader would probably roll their eyes at the content, “45 days?! For that?!”. Indeed, a quick search shows me the internet is full on hating on the tweet that took two months.

So what’s “wrong” with it? Why might the content be what it is? Let’s have a guess, but first let it be known that I totally get where Huge is coming from and I don’t roll my eyes at this tweet or the fact it took two months’ gestation.

  • “Sharing a Camembert with friends?” The age old social media engagement plea. Ask a question.
  • (How generous!)” a wee compliment for the reader.
  • Get the best flavor by serving at room temperature” the crux of the tweet, showing cheese expertise and sharing useful information. 
  • #artofcheese” hashtag, seems to accompany every “cheesy” tweet from President Cheese. (Had to use the pun, sorry)
  • And a pretty image. Good photo, product name, bright lighting, “aspirational” – honeycomb, marble serving plate… Posted through the Twitter platform itself so that users of Twitter’s own clients (channels for accessing Twitter, like the Twitter app or website) will see the image and are more likely to read the tweet. Common marketing ploy on social platforms – images tend to generate more engagement.

The pessimistic view:

  • Sounds like marketing speak, the tone is corny
  • Doesn’t actually invite any interaction (I’m not going to reply “yes, I am sharing camembert with friends!”
  • Nothing “in it for me”, at best, I learned that camembert is best at room temperature. 

So how was this tweet created? And why did it take 45 days?

For a brand represented by an agency, the agency has a lot of work to do. The tweet is a small part of a much bigger job to build the brand’s following and promote key characteristics of the brand, products, and generally build the image desired by the client.

The team who published this tweet know.

They know 45 days is a long time. They could probably push out far more engaging posts in seconds and generate some great conversation and gain more followers. They know it sounds a little cheesy. There would have been debate over every piece I bulleted out above.

For a tweet or any piece of marketing collateral in a campaign, it has to be drafted, pitched, refined, approved. The optimum time for publishing needs to be weighed based on when the audience is most active or responsive, and how the content fits within the overall content calendar of the brand. A lot of other work would have been done in those 45 days! At least a week’s worth of other tweets no doubt were written at the same time. Associated content for other platforms too. It’s 45 days turnaround not 45 days of solid work.

What our angsty, judgemental community often forget is that in business land there is a process.

Managers have to approve, the client has to approve. All these approvals avoid any major slip ups – like the wrong type of cheese mentioned or pictured, or the post going out prematurely.

It’s a new account – March 22nd was their first tweet. The client probably isn’t used to having their brand in this space and is likely a little cautious, needing approval and carefully picking over content – finding their feet on Twitter.

When a misstep can result in such a backfire especially online, can you blame the caution?

Kudos to Huge, from what I’ve read, their team are doing a good job in a harshly judged space, unfortunately their work was presented in a way that invited that famous internet vitriol.

It pays to think about what goes on behind the scenes before hefting a pitchfork.