October 7, 2010

My Top Five Fab Social Media Marketing Campaigns

By Jennifer Pricci

Social Media Marketing is in full swing, and almost all of the world’s top brands are utilizing it in one way or another. The campaigns aren’t always the easiest to execute (and sometimes go bad, although that’s another blog post), but if done correctly they have the potential to generate a massive return on investment.

How about a countdown of my favorites...

5  Google  Parisian Love

Google left a strong impression by appealing to human emotion in February 2010 when they ran a TV advertisement campaign entitled ‘Parisian Love’ during the 44th annual Superbowl. The ad demonstrated some of Google’s many search-based features, and was based around somebody debating whether to move to France to meet up with a lover.

The ad definitely generated a lot of buzz which Google capitalized on by surrounding its Parisian Love campaign by launching a Search Stories mini-site, where users can create and share their own user-generated, Superbowl-style advertisement.

Watch My Search Story

4  Starbucks  My Starbucks Idea

My Starbucks Idea is an excellent example of crowd-sourcing quality information for the purpose of business development. The great thing about this campaign isn’t just that they acquired (and continue to acquire) a huge amount of business ideas for free, but that they’re also generating brand awareness and customer engagement as a bi-product. And just imagine how happy it would make that special someone who got their idea implemented? Priceless.

Here are a few of the ideas that made it:
  • Low fat & high-protein items for breakfast
  • Free coffee for Gold Card members on their birthday
  • Starbucks VIP card
  • Splash sticks
  • Buy coffee beans, get a free cup of coffee
  • Read more My Starbucks Idea

3  Evian  Roller Babies

You must have been waiting for this one... Evian launched its ‘Roller Babies’ video in July 2009 as part of it’s ‘Live Young’ campaign, and instantly gained success. The video notched up nearly 29,000,000 views on the official YouTube video, making it one of the most popular online advertisements ever. Furthermore, the video inspired conversation via Web 2.0 technologies such as message boards, blogs and forums and Social Media/Share technologies.

Nielsen has reported that the majority of viewers of this campaign online had never actually seen the television commercial. This statistic really cemented the need for online video to run alongside – and possibly even replace – traditional media channels.

2  Everywhere  #BeatCancer

In probably the most noble campaign in my top 5, Everywhere, a social media communications and content company based in Atlanta, Georgia, launched a campaign to raise money for various non-profit cancer organizations. The campaign was based around the idea that #BeatCancer’s sponsors – eBay/Paypal & MillerCoors Brewing Company – would donate $0.01 to charity for every time the hash tag ‘#BeatCancer’ was mentioned on either a blog post, Tweet or Facebook status update. The campaign earned over $70,000 for various charities, and really showed that it’s possible to do something amazing with social media.

1  Old Spice  YouTube Campaign

Perhaps obvious, but there are just too many reasons why the Old Spice YouTube campaign may be the best of all time.

Let’s look at a few of them:
  • More people watched its videos in 24 hours than those who watched Obama’s presidential victory speech
  • Total video views reached 40,000,000 in a week
  • Campaign impressions: 1,400,000,000
  • Since the campaign launched, Old Spice body wash sales are up 27%; in the last three months up 55%; and in the last month up 107%

Amazing, huh? Sure, a 107% increase in short-term sales is an insanely good return for a marketing campaign, but you really don’t appreciate how good it is until you have to think about the ROI. You see, this particular Old Spice campaign didn’t require a $5,000,000 ad spot, a $8,000,000 celebrity paycheck, or a $15,550,000 video campaign – it’s estimated that the campaign cost a very modest $250,000 to run. It’s still too early to calculate the actual ROI of the campaign, but you can bet your bottom marketing dollar that it’s going to be positive.