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Are you throwing spaghetti at the wall?

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How often do we “throw spaghetti at the wall and hope something sticks?”

I’m not sure how many of you watch TV (okay, I’ll assume most). But, if you do, you *may* have heard the commotion surrounding a new TV show, “The Real Friends of Weho.” The show is like “Real Housewives of (you name it),” but rather than featuring housewives, it focuses on a group of LGBTQ+ friends who share their lives with the public.

This could have been a decent show – if it hadn’t been for a few poor decisions.

1.    Most of them don’t live in WeHo (a.k.a. West Hollywood),

2.    Most of them aren’t actual friends. Instead, this group was cobbled together at the last minute by producers who needed to find people to fill the slot, and

3.    No one wanted this show. No one asked for it, and no one needed it. Indeed, most people who are part of the community wouldn’t have signed off on it if given a chance – including, according to media outlets, RuPaul Charles, host of the award-winning show RuPaul’s Drag Race – which immediately precedes the show.

According to most reviews, The Real Friends has been a colossal flop, at least and at worst, offensive to a loyal community of LGBTQ+ watchers of Drag Race. According to Neilson ratings, Real Friends has cost Drag Race 70% of its viewers – and we’re only a few weeks into the season.

As marketers and communicators, it’s our job to tell stories that resonate with and reflect the values of our audiences. In marketing 101, we learned about focus groups, asking before speaking, and not just throwing content out only because we can.

One of the sayings I regularly use when discussing the importance of purposeful, calculated decisions is to avoid “throwing spaghetti at the wall and hoping something sticks.” The Real Friends is an example of MTV throwing spaghetti at a virtual wall, hoping they could cash in on something that stuck. Unfortunately, not only has nothing stuck, but it’s also brought part of the wall down with it.

Do you agree?

If so, how often do you or your team create content or marketing – just because? What tools do you use to ensure your content, message, and marketing support your audience’s wants and needs?


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