How Kanye West Redefined Social Media Marketing Expectations Last Week

Let’s face it. Humans take advantage of other humans. They always have, and they always will. Historically, the fittest win out. I can only imagine the slyest caveman getting the premier cave real estate of sorts back in the day of hunter-gatherers in a more nomadic, non-tweeting/Facebook obsessed society.  The same concept is applicable to individual brand’s presence on social platforms. Everyday brands take advantage of other brands in the funniest, most attention grabbing ways, so much that I am laughing out loud in a totally silent library as I write about Kanye’s Twitter feud inciting several brands to creatively spin the pop culture mishap in their products’ favor. These are the occasions in which I just have to dwell on the hilarity that ensues when social media is the medium chosen to take advantage of other humans (brands) and make them look more absurd than they already appear in order to advance their causes.
This week, Twitter took a huge blow in the form of stock prices. However, this in no way meant the social platform was creating decreased buzz.  It is a universal fact that some individuals simply cannot grasp the concept of maintaining a level of appropriate privacy on social. This describes the high tempered, “less fit tweeters” of the world. By less-fit tweeters, I mean Kanye West. However, we all accept that no societal norm would ever apply to Kanye, right? He went on a #RANT when he thought Wiz Khalifa was insulting his ‘flow,’ as well as criticizing his wife, Kim K. Wiz denied these accusations, but it was too late. Kanye officially lost his twitter cool and went on to numerically list all grievances against Wiz. 160 characters just wasn’t enough for him to talk out his feelings. To his defense, if I were going to publicly denounce a lesser “rap god” as the longstanding “OG of the industry,” I would need a bit more space to tweet too.
While Kanye got talked it out publicly on social media (before most likely taking to crafting a highly inappropriate new hit single targeted at Wiz Khalifa’s shortcomings), the “fittest” (and most riotous) brands took the nonsense and ran with it. Brilliant, am I right? “Beef” was going down between two main music industry front-runners; therefore Hamburger Helper creatively twisted the exchange into a pun highlighting their product’s delicious-ness.
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Kanye humbly reffered to himself as the original gangster of hip-hop and explained, “I am your OG and I will be respected as such.” Ok Kanye, you asked for it. I ‘m not going to ever claim myself as anything in the same sentence with “I am the OG (insert role)…” Regardless, Bleacher Report tweeted an incredible photo-shopped photo of Kanye courtside with the Lakers showing him stepping on Wiz on the sideline. My inner social media marketing dork has officially come out and I now want to follow the NBA because of the wit of the people working on this team.
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Jimmy Johns, also commonly known as the sandwich makers of the gods (mildly dramatic, I agree…) , also contributed: “I am your OG sub and I will be respected as such.” JJ, you may actually be the only brand allowed to call yourself the best, because no one seems to disagree. Sorry Subway, the funnier and more delicious brand won this round, but better luck next time.
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Overall, I think it is fascinating how pop culture plays such an immense part in how brands paint their image to the public on social platforms. You can see who wins the witty marketing award of the year in scenarios like this. People can relate to “funny.” Isn’t relating to consumers through getting into their perspective the baseline of what our industry circulates around? Twitter, I love you and your ability to rouse consumerist America to get involved in the cross fire of two verbally aggressive rap princesses via Twitter. Jack Dorsey, thanks for continually believing in Twitter’s superpowers. Happy February, all.

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