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Anatomy of a social media chain reaction – case study

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How one email set off a chain of events

Often, people overlook the fact that often, social media mimics real life in how communications work. We wanted to share with you a quick case study that doesn’t involve massive metrics or months of study, rather a chain reaction that involved an artist, a San Francisco start up founder, an Editor-in-chief and a famous television personality.

Event one: After months of planning, white boarding and investor meetings, Blake Pierson, Co-Founder of Lovely, innovative San Francisco rental search site with plans to go national.

Event two: We recognized the amazing potential of the company that was backed by some of the biggest names in the investor world, so wrote a story about Lovely to introduce our audience to the site that could soon be in their market.

Event three: Blake friended me on Facebook and we began commenting on each others’ walls about random things as we get to know each other.

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Event four: I a crazy picture of this wallpaper a girl had made out of stickers.

Event five: Blake privately Facebooked me about the crazy sticker wallpaper and asked if I had ever seen his friend Este Lewis’ creative wallpaper. I had not.

Event six: I was so impressed with her creativity, that we posted her wallpapers in our weekly interior design trend column.

Event seven: After publication, we shared it on Twitter and asked the Novogratz (of “Home with Novogratz” HGTV fame who we have raved about before) if they had seen Este’s wallpapers.

Event eight: They quickly tweeted back, “@AgentGenius @soyeste thx super creative..Will try to use it in a episode..well done.”

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The takeaway

In the story above, no one reinvented the wheel, no one launched a majorly funded ad campaign, a simple chain of events between people that trust each others’ recommendations led to the introduction of our audience to a rising startup and a Yale-bound student was introduced to heavy hitters in the design world. The ridiculous cliche that you get out of social media what you put into it is true, and digital marketing is often simple serendipity. Everyone in every step of the chain of events was open to new experiences, no one was looking to make money off of each other, and this really is representative of how many recommendations are made in social media, it isn’t always done via Facebook ad or Realtor recommendation.

Lani is the COO and News Director at The American Genius, has co-authored a book, co-founded BASHH, Austin Digital Jobs, Remote Digital Jobs, and is a seasoned business writer and editorialist with a penchant for the irreverent.

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  1. Pingback: #ConnectTheUnconnected – Christine's Corner

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