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News Jacking: mastering Social Media Marketing




Let me guess your social media user’s profile: I bet you are a fellow of the Egg Gang eying the world record. Or maybe, succumbing to peer pressure, you have recently scrolled your photo gallery to join the much-hyped #10YearChallenge. But you are not the only ones engaging in challenges: if not dormant, social media managers of consumer brands are riding the wave of these trends too. And if they are sleepy, it’s time for the wakeup call! Their competitors are participating wholesomely and are probably fruiting the results by increased user engagement and their Top of the Mind Awareness (ToM) without spending jack. But how to master the art of contemporary ways of marketing to earn media by social platforms?


That’s how you News Jack! Uber and Durex surfing the wave


Nowadays, to belong to the social life of users, business accounts need to see themselves as personal ones; brands need to learn the social lingo to rightly penetrate the social audience. This is when News Jacking kicks in: the term refers to the art of leveraging trending news to elevate the brand’s message and boost its exposure. A story already trending would logically be inclined to have higher impressions, creating a lasting impact that leads to users crave for more such content.

An example? Recently, UberEats India combined the two trending challenges named, #10YearChallenge and #WorldRecordEgg and got advocates for both of the challenges to talk about it on their Instagram handle.  That’s what I call ‘Killing two birds with one stone.’!

Challenges on social media are a viral lure. Now whether the tasks are fun or fatal, the fact that it gets social users going must invoke brands to take them up too!


Uber Eats India Instagram Account

TOTAL FOLLOWERS: 49,800 TOTAL POST LIKES: 2,94,148 TOTAL POST COMMENTS: 137


Or take the “Netflix and chillDurex example! The brand doesn’t consider conversations regarding contraceptive a taboo. While being promoted,  the category calls for active involvement from the audience: and what better platform than social to chat about it? With users tagging their partners and light bantering on the official account? A great way to steer user-generated content!





Durex India Instagram Account

TOTAL FOLLOWERS: 31,400 TOTAL POST LIKES: 2,539 TOTAL POST COMMENTS: 16





How to get away with data: can only customers troll brands?


The privacy policy of Netflix says that it would use user data to create recommendations for a better viewing experience. However, who knew that the data might fetch some PR if used to troll back users in their own way! Netflix sneakily used several of the bizarre watching history of users to poke them.

While it got them into distress when a group of rebels initiated a heated debate regarding the privacy of their data, the humorous nature of the tweets completely overshadowed the criticism.

By the way, Netflix isn’t the only using data to troll back users!



Spotify took troll marketing to the next level! Beyond the social media, they got giant billboards put up across cities to reveal the nasty music secrets of its users. Though it might not have gone well with the ones whose data was revealed as in the case with Netflix, the campaign went well with the marketing pundits and earned a worthy slice of media.


Games of Memes? 


Who’d ever thought that even the heritage luxury brands would fall prey to modern day memes? To launch the new Le Marché des Merveilles collection of watches, Gucci commissioned international artists curated by Alessandro Michele to develop original imagery. The images were then given to a new class of viral creators already famous on Twitter and Instagram to turn into a series of new 30 memes. The result was a curated collection of captioned art designed to help viewers express themselves online.

Gucci Instagram Account


TOTAL FOLLOWERS: 3,17,00,000 TOTAL POST LIKES: 59,752 TOTAL POST COMMENTS: 1,146


Just Do It!


A wise man once said that the categories are never boring, the marketers are! The posts cited above makes it evident that there are no rules by which social media marketing should play. If at all, rules need to be written. Trends need to be set. Status quo needs to be challenged.

New-Gen marketers must see it as an opportunity to earn media, boosting users to produce content. All they need is to take a listen to what users are talking about, what’s going to take off and time the brand’s involvement in it!

Brands who’ve missed to establish their identity on social platforms must see this as a window of opportunity and bank on it. If they don’t go for it today, they’ll hardly be ever missed!

Latest information is taken from the official social media handles and might differ with the information you see in the posts put up on this blog


Written by: Jay Bhuta

Edited by: Priscilla Greggio

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