Great Facebook and Twitter Idea: Borrowing Buzzfeed

Snootiness is a way of life in Portland, and I'm self-aware enough to know I'm guilty of it from time to time, especially when it comes to sites like Buzzfeed. (The brilliant Will Leitch articulates why here.) One of University of Portland's best known alumni is Team USA soccer star Megan Rapinoe, and last Thursday Buzzfeed posted a list of "19 Reasons why Megan Rapinoe Would make the Ultimate BFF." I wasn't going to post it on the UP Facebook page (snootiness alert!), but then I figured I may as well. The result? My most viral post this school year, reaching more than 60,000 people (for a page with only 12,500 total likes, that was awesome).

With that experience fresh in my mind, I came across Drake University's brilliant Buzzfeed-inspired "11 Reasons why Neil deGrasse Tyson is the Greatest Ever" listicle that they used to help announce a lecture by deGrasse Tyson in the fall.

If you can't Buzz 'em, Feed 'em. Or something like that.

If you can't Buzz 'em, Feed 'em. Or something like that.

Great content like that reminds me of what Scott Stratten calls the "Third Circle." (First circle: Your followers. Second circle: Your followers' friends. Third circle: Your followers friends' friends.) Usually when we post things about our colleges, at best we reach the second circle. Our followers are proud of some achievement from the college, and they share it with their friends. But it's really tough to reach that third circle, to post something interesting and cool enough that our followers' friends - who have no affiliation with our page - will also share it with their friends. Content like this was born to be shared and retweeted, and is the ultimate goal for anyone in this line of work.

I was able to reach that third circle with an article from Buzzfeed. Drake was able to reach it with their own content. (I took that screen shot early after it was posted - it went on to get a lot more likes/shares.) Drake: 1. Me: 0.

This tactic would probably get tired if used too often, but it was absolutely pitch perfect for someone like deGrasse Tyson, who has a certain cultural cache. It's a brilliant way to get people excited about an upcoming event, it's fresh, it's creative, it's hip... just all around really well done. Good on ya, Drake. And also, let's just take a moment to appreciate Drake's profile photo, easily the best one I've ever seen:

Best profile pic ever? Best profile pic ever!

Best profile pic ever? Best profile pic ever!

Great Pinterest and Facebook Idea: School Pride Pets

Great Facebook Idea: Orientation Road Signs