What do vegetables, pens, a dictionary, and toilet paper all have in common?
They may be ordinary household items, but they have extraordinary presences in the social media landscape. Their key to success? Playing to the strengths of their products - which means getting creative and sometimes a little silly.
You might even know whom I’m referencing if you follow these particular brands and their handles listed below.
A look at their product: A line of bathroom tissue manufactured by Procter & Gamble.
How they stay silly, but smart, on social: Who wants to follow social media handles that talk about going to the bathroom every day? More than 81 thousand people on Twitter and a million on Facebook, evidently.
While other TP brands might shy away from openly discussing Number #2 and a “shiny hiney” off or online, Charmin embraces it by saying “enjoy the go” with their lines of ultra-soft, strong, and gentle toilet paper.
As South Park’s Eric Cartman once said, “Toilet time is the last bastion of American freedom.” Sounds like Charmin figured that out early on and decided to loudly and proudly endorse potty breaks.
2. Imperfect Produce
A look at their product: Perfectly good fruits and vegetables - they just happen to be misshapen, which makes consumers less inclined to buy them at grocery stores and stores more likely to throw them out.
How they stay silly, but smart, on social: There will always be consumers at the grocery store who dismiss vegetables or fruits as being too dark or light in color - too big, too strange, too oddly shaped, too something. The more produce is judged on this basis, the more likely it is to get tossed out and go to waste.
Scroll through the Instagram feed for Imperfect Produce and you’ll notice every vegetable and fruit photographed has little plastic googly eyes. They’re already “too” different to someone in the world, so why not have fun with it?
This produce delivery service is not in the business of perfection - they would rather educate consumers that everything and everyone has flaws - and it’s our imperfections that are often the best part.
A look at their product: A company known for publishing reference books, particularly dictionaries, with their own noted for being “America’s most-trusted online dictionary.”
How they stay silly, but smart, on social: You learn a new word each day across Merriam-Webster’s social media platforms from Twitter to Instagram. Some of these words have long been established, while others are new additions to the book, with 2017 introducing the “Internet of Things” and an alternative definition to the word “trolls.”
They also keep an ear to the ground, with words picked up via pop culture and current events. As for their competition at Dictionary.com? They’ve got the clout to call them out on their tweets.
A look at their product: Writing instruments, or pens. Sometimes markers and highlighters too.
How they stay silly, but smart, on social: On the surface, it would seem like managing social media for a pen brand has the potential to be boring. Uncap a pen, however, and watch how everything changes.
Artistic illustrations made by Sharpies are posted and shared on all of their social handles - popular trends like bullet journaling and calligraphy get a Sharpie seal of approval on Instagram. The markers are turned into a GIF banner image on Facebook and there’s no holiday or event that they can’t turn into a colorful celebration.
As you can see, each of these brands has been able to adapt their brand personality into an engaging social media presence - and not necessarily in the ways you might expect. These examples show that there are various options to help showcase your business on social - with a little thought, you can create an engaging presence, which doesn't need to be all about direct promotion.