It was the tweet heard around the world. Even if you weren’t watching the Super Bowl, you were aware of Oreo’s “Blackout Tweet” and the implications it had. Brands felt the pressure to be just as agile and ushered in a new era of “real-time marketing.” Who wouldn’t want to measure up to such stunning success of 10,000+ retweets, 18,000+ ‘likes’, and 5,000 and more shares Who wouldn’t want 6 Cannes Lions  Xbox’s recent social success shows that it isn’t necessarily real-time marketing that drives virality– it is tremendously creative marketing.

At first look, it strikes you that this isn’t even real-time marketing at all, but nevertheless just as well-timed. This was carefully planned, crafted, branded. Moreover, this was anticipated. Unlike Oreo’s tweet, this wasn’t just limited to Twitter, either. The same message on Facebook replicated the tweet’s success.

This caught the eyes of BusinessWeek, who said that it was “a bit surprising that they were so nice about it.” Mashable let out a punny “well-played.” Another outlet went as far as saying the message softened the rivalry between Microsoft and Sony.

What’s really key to the success of Xbox’s post is that it understands and takes advantage of the similar messages being shot out from fans themselves as the next-gen console war is being waged. The message reflects the playful one upmanship of the gaming community right now and extends the brand’s hand out to the competition, and in doing so engaged Sony’s followers too.

The takeaway is this: successful social rewards creativity, promptness and thoughtfulness in regard to the target audience.  It’s not easy, but the message alone can be spare and simple.