Arrival of @SuperStarRajini on Twitter and the Social Media Blunders

May 5, 2014 witnessed a special day in the history of Twitter, especially for @TwitterIndia when the legendary actor, Super Star RajiniKanth joined Twitter as @SuperstarRajini. Even before there was any tweet, the followers started pouring in and Within 10 minutes of joining, the official twitter handle of the great Rajini sir with just 1 tweet, got 25K+ followers. This sure was in line with the reputation of the star and the love people have for him!

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my tweet

Well, this was kind of much awaited breaking news for Twitterati and timeline started filling in with tweets related to arrival of legend with a few like “ now twitter is verified” to Twitter joins Rajinikanth.

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However, after that whatever happened was something which made Rajini sir’s die-hard fans and social media enthusiasts like me to ponder on what the hell was going on!!!

The Issues

  • To start with, the account was verified since beginning (I never saw such thing ever)
  • The handle bio says, its official twitter handle of RajiniKanth, means its not his personal handle, which enhances the suspicion (added by twitter skin) that its for promoting a movie!!!

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  • After one tweet, there was a pause and then suddenly there was a flood of automated tweets thanking every fan with a signed poster of his upcoming movie
  • This number of automated tweets at one point reached to 7500, which at the time of writing the post reduced to 5457, and at this moment only one reply post is visible, the rest are where no one knows! This all happening when for an account, there is a daily upper limit of 2400 tweets broken into smaller limits for semi-hourly intervals! Also the agency handling this didn’t check not to give writing rights to the tool used to delete the tweets, which also added to the joke that was made!

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  • Twitter India welcomed Rajini Sir on twitter and promoted this tweet! (Again a first for me)

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  • At this moment, Twitter is suggesting to follow RajiniKanth official handle as a header on twitter timeline!

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Lessons for any digital agency

Certainly this is not work of superstar Rajini, but of an agency which in all probability would be handling digital promotion of his latest film and somehow convinced him to have this official handle. This whole story gives an account of chain of blunders that an agency could have done, and this one has done all!

Below are some lessons for agency as to what it should never do, especially if strategizing or managing celebrity account-

  • Don’t try to go beyond the rules and general norms of a social platform.
  • Don’t misuse the celebrity status for some immediate gain, and also don’t underestimate the celebrity status. Here, if it was a normal entry of Rajini Sir on twitter, at the end of the day, it would have garnered a better response.
  • Don’t try to be oversmart. You may get verified account or additional quota of tweets but what you also got is tag of ‘terrible strategy maker agency’. Sooner or later your name will be in public, and you might not want to be remembered as an agency which ruined a huge moment of a social channel .
  • You should not play with fans’ emotions and spoil the historic moment (well, in the history of social channel!)

Don’t know what new blunders come with this twitter handle with the rise of Sun!

Published by

Kalpana Chauhan

I am social media marketer and consultant. Prior to this I have been into Management research, consulting and academics for over 10 years. I am a PhD scholar at University of Delhi. I have published research papers and management cases in the domain of social media, CRM and other Marketing topics. My research interests are in the area of social media marketing and CRM and I would be sharing my thoughts on the same here on this blog.

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