And so it’s goodbye from me
So with the royal baby a whole two days old, it seems best to wind up this Tumblr. A few words to close with…
I’m a republican as it happens, but at times like this I’m not going to be a dick about it - William and Kate deserve to celebrate the new person in their lives and I’m pleased for them. In an ideal world they could enjoy this in private; obviously though, they are public figures and complete strangers will want to celebrate with them. In an age of social media with brands becoming more human, it’s inevitable brands will want to be among those people. And many did so - sending their congratulations in a classy, genuine and respectful way.
But, with the trend for realtime marketing being so hot right now, some brands got carried away with a “who shouts loudest” mentality. At a time like this, there really is no need to plug your latest film that will be forgotten in three months, or crack a bawdy gag that the baby was conceived in one of your cars, or deface our national flag with a potty and bogroll. Some brands did it anyway, and in doing so became the equivalent of the dreadful kind of person you encounter at a party - the kind who inevitably turns the topic of every conversation into “let’s talk about me”.
What I initially set up as an in-joke Tumblr to let off some steam quickly became a minor viral sensation. I was clearly not the only one who thought gatecrashing a child’s birth to sell stuff was not on, judging from a single day’s traffic of 15,000+ visits and 1,100+ Tweets. The overwhelming majority of those Tweets were in agreement, with many coming from fellow pros who work in social media and were similarly turned off by the crassness. Hopefully there’s a lesson in there, one that will be better borne in mind in future by realtime marketers: not every conversation you ever take part in has to be about you and your brand.