Cracking the Success Behind the Instagram Egg

Written by: Leo Manning

Even though we are only two weeks into 2019, social media has already seen some massive changes. The first of these? An egg is now the most-liked image ever.

What Happened.

On February 6th, 2018, Kylie Jenner shared an image of her newborn baby, which became the most liked image on Instagram with over 18 million likes. It held this record until 2019, when a stock photo of an egg was shared by @world_record_egg on January 4th. The image was captioned:

 

View this post on Instagram

 

Let’s set a world record together and get the most liked post on Instagram. Beating the current world record held by Kylie Jenner (18 million)! We got this 🙌 #LikeTheEgg #EggSoldiers #EggGang

A post shared by EGG GANG 🌍 (@world_record_egg) on


Let’s set a world record together and get the most liked post on Instagram. Beating the current world record held by Kylie Jenner (18 million)! We got this 🙌”

Although a seemingly daunting objective, the egg did achieve this goal – within 10 days.

But it didn’t stop there. As of the writing of this blog, the egg has over 42 million likes, which is not only the record for Instagram likes, but also the record for the most-liked post on social media ever (beating out the YouTube music video for “Despacito,” which has 31 million likes).

Why This Matters.

The biggest question on everyone’s mind after the egg succeeded: how? The main reason behind the success of the egg is apparently their goal-oriented messaging. The post made the objective clear: surpass a celebrity as the most shared post. By using this rallying cry, they were able to generate enough interest to topple a prominent social media influencer.

Even though it could be viewed as a random story of an egg going viral, there are some applicable lessons for businesses of all sizes. Here are some key takeaways from the egg and how it applies to brands across social media today.

Power of Humor

Social media marketing today differs a lot from marketing tactics in the past. Today, humor is being leveraged by more brands to achieve goals, from both larger companies (such as Wendy’s, who is known for making fun of people on Twitter) and smaller companies (such as Steak-umm, whose Twitter personifies the beef product). Humor, when done well, is a successful way to drive engagement while keeping interest.

Business Potential behind Instagram

After the egg went viral, the creators started selling official merchandise. The link, which directs to an Everpress page, has received over 1.4M clicks (as of posting). Instagram is no stranger to being used as a way to drive sales, especially with features such as Shopping on Instagram. Shopping on Instagram is a major step that the platform has taken to open itself up to being used by businesses for sales, since it allows pages to link to specific products from an image post.

Impact of Images

Would this campaign have been nearly as effective on another platform without an image? Most likely not. BuzzSumo has found that on Facebook, posts with images had 2.3x more engagement than posts without. This solidifies the importance of images for all channels, but also helps demonstrate what has helped Instagram thrive as a platform.