The Best Buy "Serial" Tweet: Imagining the Tale Behind the Social Media Fail

Young Marketer was too clever for his own good

Young Marketer was too clever for his own good

Young Marketer was sitting on the bus yesterday morning, listening to the latest episode of hit true-crime podcast Serial when a lightning bolt of inspiration blasted down from the heavens.

"Oh, this is going to be good," he thought, heart racing the way it tends to when an especially good idea strikes. It was so obvious in retrospect: The pay phone at Best Buy had been discussed on the show and in online message boards ad nauseam over the last few months. It has even become a pseudo-tourist attraction in recent weeks.

Did Adnan call his friend Jay from the pay phone after murdering his girlfriend? Was there ever even a pay phone at that Best Buy? Who cares? It's Best Buy! Right there at the center of this cultural phenomenon! So obvious.

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Young Marketer took a seat at his cubicle and began crafting the Tweet That Would Change His Career, dreaming of likes, retweets, favs raining down. Such good #content, just in time for the holidays.

Young Marketer briefly considered potential backlash stemming from making light of the murder of a 17-year-old girl, but this idea was too good.

This is not good #content

This is not good #content

"They'll get it," he thought. "This is funny."

First, a warm-up tweet. Something to get the masses primed. Something self-deprecating, a little off-kilter to set the stage for this bit of cleverness.

Then at 2:48 p.m., it was time. Young Marketer pressed send.

He stared intently at his monitor as notifications rolled in.

"Oh fuck," Young Marketer said softly under his breath as his palms began to sweat. "Ohfuckohfuckohfuckohfuck," he whispered.

His phone rang. The boss. She would be handling the apology tweet.

"Why don't you take the rest of the day off?" she asked venomously.

He hurried out before most of his co-workers knew what had happened. Better to leave the walk of shame through the cubicles for tomorrow, if he wasn't fired.

Young Marketer's thoughts turned to his resume as he waited for the early bus home.

"Probably a good time to update my LinkedIn," he thought.

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