In True 2019 Style, a Photo of an Egg has the most Instagram Likes Ever

Ahh 2019, what a year it’s shaping up to be already. There’s been *more* Brexit drama, (who’d have predicted that, right?), people running into walls for Bird Box-related ‘likes’, and a vegan sausage roll that sent a certain ‘journalist’ into a meltdown. And it’s only January.

The year is showing no signs of slowing down in terms of craziness levels, as an egg has found Instagram fame. That’s right, @world_record_egg has lived up to its name and has made history as the most-liked photo on the channel of all time, receiving no less than 38 million likes and over one million comments. Does that officially make it a Kardashian? By the rules of the internet, probably.

Kylie Jenner, who owned the record until Tuesday with her baby announcement post, has most likely been left feeling a little deflated. And so are digital marketers across the globe, as brands are now spending more money than ever on social media, only to be beaten by a solitary egg. Social media spend accounts for 13.8% of brands’ total marketing budget, up from 9.8% in August 2017, marking the highest ever annual increase, according to the latest CMO survey. Awkward.

We know there are some clear ingredients that make a social post or campaign successful; carefully curated imagery straight out of the real world, strong copy, relatability, authenticity, etc. etc., but when it comes down to it, this news shows there’s just no predicting the world of the web.

When we plan content, we can always tell which ones have the best chance of flying – and naturally we engineer the calendar for that, and this becomes more predictable over time. But occasionally one idea will just explode to become a national talking point and, truthfully, sometimes the exact reason is hard to determine. It just catches a wave and resonates with something imperceptible. A bit like the egg.

So, does this mean we’ll need to start shoving eggs into our social strategies? Or simply admit there isn’t a formula anyone can follow to make content truly famous? Or, have to learn to accept that we’ll not always be able to predict what might steal the limelight from even the most well-thought out posts?

Perhaps the answer lies with the egg-poster, who has remained anonymous so far, though the profile does contain an email address if you’d like to try for a response. Conspiracies of their identity have ranged from egg salespeople to social media marketers, to random people off the street. And that’s maybe the most interesting thing about the whole story; it really could have been anyone with a phone and an egg.

So maybe don’t rush to transform your strategy just yet, because let’s face it, modern communications by its very nature is chaotic, unpredictable, and insanely weird. But hey, that’s why we love it… right?