Charlie Sheen increased his Twitter followers to 2,211,000 today, almost half the population of the State of Minnesota - in just over one week. With Sheen's recent termination at Warner Brothers, he created an internship listing to manage his social media campaigns and is also working to join the celebrities to endorse products through Twitter.
Following his recent termination at Warner Brothers and his stratospheric success on Twitter, Sheen has created an internship role for someone (with #tigerblood) to manage his social media campaigns - and monetize them - by joining the ranks of celebrities who endorse products through Twitter (Depending on the reach of the celeb, they can make upwards of $3,000 per tweet!). If a #winning internship seems like the role for you, then you might want to look at what engagement factors fueled his record breaking follower count.
When asked about reaching the 2 million mark on Twitter, Sheen said,"We gobbled the soft target that was 2.0 mil, like a bag of troll-house zombie chow."
Why are so many people following this guy?
1. Nobody Wants to Miss a Train Wreck
For many years Sheen has been in the public eye. He is labeled as highly self-destructive and much speculation has gone into assessing whether it is all a facade or simply him being that crazy!
Regardless of the debate, Charlie Sheen probably recognizes that by living publicly on Twitter, he provides his fans and detractors the ability to make their own minds up.
2. Saturate Traditional Media Channels
Charlie Sheen has been feeding the news channels new stories consistently. Whereas someone like Lindsay Lohan can only stay in the news a few times each year, Sheen has found a way to create a news story each week, with several weeks having more than one story.
When Sheen joined Twitter, he left his account inactive for a long enough period to generate tip-offs within both the online and offline community.
3. He is a Celebrity, from a Celebrity Family
Sheen's father, Martin Sheen, was in the public eye years before Charlie was born. He appeared in movies before the age of 10.
While the average Twitterer cannot just "be a celebrity" no matter how much #tigerblood they have - the lesson for the rest of us may simply be to play to your strengths and boldly be yourself.
4. Charlie Sheen Invokes Strong Emotions
People either love him or hate him. Social media interactions are based off making users feel something. Anger, love, hate, pain, sorrow, humor, or having people relate all cause users to want to interact. His strong opinions, and cavalier attitude have fared well with the young Twitter users.
BJ Fogg, Stanford Professor, Founder of Persuasive Technology, and one of the "10 New Gurus You Should Know" by Fortune Magazine. Fogg published a paper titled, "Mass Interpersonal Persuasion" which outlines the potential value of being personally persuasive but having the reach of mass media.
Sheen is touching on all of them and that is why the endorsement deals will continue to
roll in for Sheen, no matter how borderline his behavior gets. This is not traditional "old" media; this is "new" media - a social media - and advertisers will be lining up at Sheen's door.
5. Branded Hashtags
'#Tigerblood' is a good example of this. Sheen coined the phrase during a TMZ interview, stating he has he has tiger blood coursing through his veins, and now the social media community is all over it.
The phrase is popular on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. An original concept, a snazzy name, and blammo! The world is hooked on tiger blood.
Jim Carrey also uses his own hashtag #boing to host discussions on Twitter. The advantage of using hashtags is that conversations and repartee can occur between users regardless of follower/following relationships. It is an excellent way for celebrities to listen to and interact with their audience without compromising their privacy.
6. Embrace Social Channels, Live Publicly
We have seen celebs who have been thrust into the limelight before for "shameful behavior." Actors like Nick Nolte, Mel Gibson, Gary Busey, Madonna, Whitney Houston, David Hasselhoff and Tiger Woods. Until now, none have embraced the publicity in the way Sheen has and with the popularity and influence of social, this has thrust Sheen into a category we have never seen before.
Celebs ousted by the media usually pit themselves against the media or simply disappear from the public eye until the dust settles. Never before has someone who has been ousted by the media, embrace it, plant their feet squarely on Twitter, and says come join in on all the fun!
There are several lessons to be learned from Sheen's success on Twitter. Let's face it, we do not have the capability to saturate traditional media the way Sheen has, but we can learn from his confidence in himself, his willingness to speak his mind, and his ability to stir up emotions.
What do you think, is Sheen a savvy marketer or just plain crazy?