Self Lender is a real company that, according to its website, helps people "begin their financial journey with a credit builder account," while also saving them some money.
The picture that Twitter user Pitbull Updates posted on October 29 of a supposed text conversation between Self Lender and a potential client were actually photoshopped for comedic effect.
But that didn't stop a hoard of people from praising the company's "youth led" marketing strategy before giving Self Lender a try.
With the caption "Instagram ads are getting out of hand," Pitbull Updates posted a photo of a supposed crass conversation between Self Lender and a potential customer.
The photo went mega-viral, with many other accounts endlessly sharing the image!
As the photo spread across the internet, many commended the company for its relatable marketing strategy.
Real talk—it's what the kids are into these days!
What many of these people didn't know was that the ad was a fake.
According to Self Lender, the real version of the ad looks like this:
But here's the twist: the fake ad for Self Lender that went viral has inspired real-world customers to flock to the service!
According to Brett Billick, the chief marketing officer for Self Lender:
"We have seen an increase in traffic and have had people reaching out quite a bit...We definitely think that some of the increase in traffic is from how viral it has become. There are clearly people who are now asking 'Who the bleep is Self Lender?' And there are people who are chiming in laughing but also responding who are customers."
Billick might just be onto something.
People absolutely LOVE the fake ad.
Pitbull Updates said he had no idea the photoshopped picture would do so well, or that it would inspire real web traffic to Self Lender's website.
"I decided to photoshop it because the original ad was like 'eh,' and I was like, it'd be pretty funny if the ad looked like how people actually talk. I literally didn't know people would think it would be real. I thought it'd just get like a couple retweets."
Of course, that doesn't mean he's getting any payment for his role in Self Lender's newfound success.
"I'm not even getting compensated."