I love creative advertising campaigns so in lieu of the aftermath of the Superbowl last weekend I wanted to look up some of the best and most influential social media intensify advertising campaigns in recent years.  I am interested in pursuing a career in advertising so I regularly read Ad Age online which ranked in a recent article the 10 best Social Media Campaigns of the year.  Here’s a recap of some of my favorites on the Ad Age list but check out the link at the end of this post to see the complete list of explanations and agencies responsible for the work.

The first successful campaign listed was a tourism campaign similar to the campaigns discussed by Lorenzo in his presentation in class last week.  The mayor of Obermutten, Switzerland posted a video to the town’s Facebook page promising anyone who Liked the page would get their picture put up on the town’s actual bulletin board causing the town of 79 people to get 14,000 fans on their Facebook page.  This small town would have never become so popular without Facebook and an advertising campaign that gives people an incentive to communicate and share online.  Below is a picture of the mayor placing all the pictures of their Facebook fans on the bulletin board in Obermutten.

Another increasingly successful campaign was supported by American Express to promote shoppers to shop at small businesses on the Saturday after Thanksgiving.  The Facebook page for “Small Business Saturday” had 1.2 million fans last year and 2.7 million fans this year and #smallbizsaturday trended on Twitter.  For the first 10,000 businesses that registered Facebook gave out $100 ad credit.  This campaign is an example of social media outlets like Facebook helping the economy by supporting small businesses by using their technology to influence society. I think this is an amazing use of social media for advertising because it promoted not any particular brand or business but the retail industry as a whole that has been suffering due to the recession.

To promote the 4th season of True Blood HBO created a Facebook app “Immortalize Yourself,” that allowed fans to make videos of themselves with characters from the show and their friends.  People could then share the videos with friends to discuss the new season and get excited for the premiere.  The app pulled personal data from each person’s Facebook page to personalize it to them and feature their friends.  This is an upcoming trend for many movies and television shows to garner buzz online through social media content sharing, web casts and exclusive promotions.  Most television shows have hashtags that run at the bottom of the television screen so people can tweet about the show as they watch it to continue the discussion online after the episode is over.

Heinz enabled its Facebook page so that people could send friends cans of tomato soup or chicken noodle soup if they were sick.  This was in collaboration with an agency in the UK during the beginning of cold and flu season.  For an additional fee of $3 you could buy an actual can of soup and it would be mailed in a couple of days to the friend inscribed with their name and “Get Well Soon.”   This campaign takes social media to the next step by actually sending a physical product to the consumer for a small fee.  Using social media for community outreach and social service is also a growing trend as it helps organize volunteers for social well being all around the world.

And finally one of the most well known and well established brands to use social media successfully is Volkswagen.  Volkswagen has a reputation of having some of the most creative advertisements over the past 50 years from print ads of the small beetle bug to the Star Wars commercials of today Volkswagen knows their brand and their advertising.  Volkswagen built an app on their Dutch Facebook page asking people to vote for their favorite classic car with a chance of winning a Fanwagen which is the winning model of car tricked out with awesome social features unlike any other cars.  The owner of the “social” car can print out Facebook newsfeed inside the car and display their relationship status on the license plate.  This car is a social media car! Volkswagen always has the coolest advertisements and cars so maybe some time soon we will all be driving around Fanwagens equipped with all our social media needs!

Hope you found these social media campaigns as interesting as I did! Here’s the link to the complete ad age article if you wanna see some of the other top campaigns they have chosen to highlight!





3 responses »

  1. Jerry says:

    Although not on your list, I think Pretzel Crisps is doing an interesting social media campaign. Searching for tags like party in the boston area, they analyze whether someone is an “influencer” (and apparently I am), and provide them with free samples for their event. I think it’s a pretty creative approach that certain caught my attention.

  2. jperson182 says:

    Everyone loves getting something for ‘free,’ which many of the successful campaigns highlighted offer, or if not giving outright, they give the chance of winning something. I think that can be a big draw and help spread the campaign

    I think another great campaign, which I remember from back in 2009, was Australia’s ‘Best Job in the World’ posting that started the search for a blogger to promote Hamilton Island on the Great Barrier Reef. Here’s an article if you’re unfamiliar. http://bit.ly/8pTf
    While the blog was interesting, and I certainly wanted the job, the thing that made it so successful is that it was such a unique opportunity that word of it spread around the globe quickly. The Island’s goal of promoting itself was finished before the winner even made the first blog post.

  3. shanereardon says:

    I really enjoyed learning about all of the advertising campaigns that you included in your blog, especially True Blood! I wish I was in to Twitter when season 4 was on tv! I’ll make sure to follow some of the trending topics about the show this summer during season 5. If I were to add a company to your list that has really made use of social media for their ad campaigns recently, I would include AB’s campaign for Bud Light Platinum (#makeitplatinum). Due to the amount of commercials that aired during the Super Bowl, as well as the hash tag featured on the commercials, I decided to try it at local bar later that week! Additionally, I checked out the trending topic during the Super Bowl to see what it was all about. It’s become pretty popular. I’ve even noticed that people are including the hash tag in their tweets whether they’re going to have a Bud Light Platinum or not!

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