I've always wanted to be inspiring.

First, you have to read this post by my friend at Totally Mental Mommy.

Done? Sweet.

And if you're waiting to click that link, here's the short version:

I mentioned on Facebook how I was annoyed that someone could opt me in to a group I didn't necessarily want to be a part of. Athena (the Totally Mental Mommy in question) took that as a challenge (for some reason) and decided to create an Eddie Izzard-inspired group called "Babies Taste of Chicken." She added me and a whole bunch of other folks, then tittered gleefully when she clicked the "quit group" button, leaving all of us to fend for ourselves in a world gone mad with baby eatery.

But a funny thing happened on the way to cringing-in-fear-over-membership-to-a-disgusting-group ... we all dug it.

Suddenly you've got a handful of folks posting the most disturbing stuff they can dredge off of the internetz. Google Image Search has gotten an unhealthy spike in search terms such as "eating baby" or "delicious infant." Someone, somewhere, is scratching his or her head in wonder at the rise in interest in infant digestion.

The members, once victims, are now gleefully adding their own friends, who are in turn adding photos, videos, and more members, who tell their friends, who add their friends ... it grows.

I work in marketing and advertising. There are people who spend BILLIONS to create a cult following. There are companies who live and die on whether or not they can encourage a group of people to happily blather about them online. Athena has managed to pull it off with a free Facebook group.

The real fun, for me at least, is noting the sheer volume of baby-eating-related material that's already on the Web. It's just sitting there, waiting for us to find and re-post it. That, my friends, is disturbing.

But also fascinating, because I'm pretty sure that no one in this group is actually out eating babies. And yet, here we are, all having a grand time while discoursing over the most amazingly disturbing topic anyone could think of. What a world.

What this says about marketing is ... well ... hell, I'm not entirely sure WHAT this is saying. I do know that this is a phenomenon worth paying attention to. The group isn't big at the moment ... maybe ten or twelve people. But those people are scattered all over, and have little else in common besides membership to this freak show. There are several people in the group that I don't know, and have never heard of before I got opted in.

I'm going to keep following this to see where it leads. And when I know how to duplicate it with any topic, I'm going to make millions of dollars. And then I'll become a celebrity, and be in the public eye. And then someone will dig up that I belonged to a Facebook group called "Babies Taste of Chicken," and I'll lose it all in a sweeping backlash from the public, who now think of me as a disgusting freak.

Marketing is fun.

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Kevin Tumlinson is the author of numerous novels, novellas, and non-fiction books, and the host of the Wordslinger Podcast. Try three of his best books for free when you download his starter library at kevintumlinson.com/starterlibrary.


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