I prepare for battle every Thursday evening after work.
My armor consists of a bowl of popcorn, a glass of wine, my television, and last but certainly not least, my smartphone.
What my co-workers who don’t follow me on Twitter may not know is that while they partake in happy hours, I moonlight as a Gladiator.
Lady Gaga has her “Little Monsters,” and Nicki Minaj has her “Barbies.” But, nothing can compare to the prime-time social networking force of Scandal’s “Gladiators.”
Scandal is a political thriller television series on ABC starring Kerry Washington as Olivia Pope, head of crisis management firm Olivia Pope & Associates.
In some circles Scandal is known as, “That show written by the lady who created Grey’s Anatomy.” But, Scandal is not just “that show.”
On Twitter Scandal is the show.
Scandal generates five trending topics on Twitter when each episode airs. This is because according to the Hollywood Reporter, each episode gets 2,200 tweets per minute when it first airs. The show’s Feb. 7 episode generated a record 10,582 tweets per minute.
From Thursday evening to Friday morning last week, I tweeted about Scandal 34 times (don’t judge me). Now, multiply that by the 111,456 followers of the show’s Twitter handle (@ScandalABC) and take into account the Gladiators who may not follow the handle. That’s a large number of tweets going out.
Here are three lessons to learn from Pope & Associates:
1. Content will always reign supreme.
The show’s compelling storylines keep viewers coming back for more drama each week.
Well, that and Olivia Pope’s stylish snow white suits. Anyone who can rock all white year-round without getting a speck of dirt on herself is worthy of the utmost respect, but I digress.
Scandal’s episodes are always focused on answering questions left from previous episodes while adding fresh storylines to the mix. The writers of the show (@ScandalWriters) know what its audience wants and provides it to them in unexpected ways.
I understand, no one said content creation was easy. Below are 23 ways to help your organization generate strong content:
2. Twitter is a two-way street
ABC releases a new hashtag at the end of every episode of Scandal providing viewers with a forum to discuss the show. Each hashtag is related to the week’s episode. Past hashtags included #WhatTheHuck, #WhoShotFitz, and #FreeHuck. Of course, these hashtags are in addition to their mainstays #Scandal and #AskScandal.
However, one of the biggest mistakes organizations make on Twitter is promoting themselves too much instead of connecting with their audience. The #AskScandal hashtag allows the show to connect directly with its viewers. Wondering who designed a character’s outfit, just #AskScandal and they’ll respond fairly quickly. It’s not enough to create a forum for people to talk about your organization; you have to actually interact with them too.
3. Your network is your networth
People don’t trust brands. People trust people. Edelman’s Trust Barometer found that only 14 percent of the global population trusts business. So, one way for your organization to become a people person is to get your employees active on social media. This is more than getting your employees to simply tweet your content verbatim. It is about having employees who are natural sharers, content creators, and thought leaders who can represent the values of your brand even when the office is closed for the day. In other words, it is important to have employees who can be themselves while being the brand.
The actors on Scandal are very active on Twitter prior to each episode, during each episode, and after each episode. They communicate with fans and help spread awareness about the show. Trust me, I know, because I follow all of them.
And, of course we practice what we preach here. Feel free to connect with McMurry/TMG employees on Twitter.
Interested in becoming a Gladiator, or at least incorporating some of their tactics into your organization’s digital strategy? Check out Scandal‘s social activity on Thursdays.
(Editors note: Beware. Every episode will leave you like this.)