10 Social Media Campaigns that Rock! Learn How to do the Same!

What defines an exemplary social media campaign? What are the elements necessary to capture consumers’ attention and bring about interest and participation in any given social media campaign? What are the best recent social media campaigns online? How can we measure the success of a social media campaign?

A Brief Intro

It is definite that things in life are never just black or white; they usually come in different colors and shades which naturally applies to everything we do, see, touch, feel and so on.

Recently, one of the main focuses of companies with online presence and dedicated communities is creating and designing original, top-of-the-line, creative and motivating campaigns using social media.

Here is where the colors come in play! If we assume that colors are the intensity of a social media campaign’s success, brighter colors being most accomplished and so on, it can be quite difficult to determine which campaign was executed perfectly! Yet, after conducting some research, I have been able to highlight 10 brands that were able to pass the test with flying colors!

10 Social Media Campaigns that Rock:

1. “Give Me My Chuck” campaign – using social media to pressure the NBC to continue to broadcast the third season of Chuck!
[ See this campaign's Social Media by Example review on Thoughtpick ]

Save Chuck Campaign

Save Chuck Campaign

2. Sea World’s Whale social media campaign – a unique integrated campaign that “serves as a bit of a reminder about some of the clever social media marketing that can be done beyond the typical diet of Facebook Pages, Twitter and YouTube.”
See this campaign's Social Media by Example review on Thoughtpick ]

3. Threadless building “brand love” – a great message and a comprehensive coverage on the most suitable social media channels.

4. Dunkin Donut’s new product Facebook campaign- using the Coolatta fan page, Dunkin gave out free beverages as a twitter avatar contest!
[ See this campaign's Social Media by Example review on Thoughtpick ]

Dunkin Donut's Cooletta

Dunkin Donut's Cooletta

5. Ford using social media to promote the new Fiesta – Ford was able to find the right target audience for its Fiesta and market to them in an intriguing manner.

6. Sony Ericsson‘s viral approach - here, Sony used a mysterious character named Johnny X and YouTube to create an element of curiosity to promote Xperia X1.

7. Burger King‘s Facebook application (in addition to other social media uses) - the Whopper Sacrifice application on Facebook.

8. Dell‘s effective mix of social media tools – namely Direct2Dell Blog.

9. Target‘s Facebook campaign – “Bullseye Gives” campaign on Facebook: a voting application connected to the brand’s existing Facebook page.

Target's Bullseye gives

Target's Bullseye gives

10. Comparethemeerkat.com‘s inclusive campaign - utilizing humor and a blend of social media channels to promote car insurance.

Elements of Success (how can it work for YOU?)

The success of social media campaigns, and utilization in general, does not, in any way, rely on some magical formula or any secret ingredients we might need to acquire from the belated witches of Salem! Yet, it is a careful mixture of simple and valuable elements which need to be present before, through and after the implementation of any social media campaign. Some elements could be very obvious, while others need some research and attention to be achieved.

  • Make sure that you apply smart integration with the “right” social media channels that suit your brand image, the product/service you are trying to promote and its value. Not every social media channel will bring about the positive feedback you are waiting for!
  • Take time to choose the team who will be in charge of executing your social media plan. It is not about the quantity, it is about the quality, remember that! Experience and already established online PR agents or staff members will be of a higher value to your campaign in comparison with anyone with a lot of free time to waste!
  • Again, content is king! It is a must to make sure that your social media campaign’s content is not offensive, biased or easily misinterpreted. This could be easily used against you!
  • Just as it is important to know your target market online, learning more about your online target audience is very important! This will not only help you know where to find them, it will also guide you in designing the campaign that will intrigue them and lead them to take actions!
  • You are under the microscope; play nice! Always be aware that once your social media campaign has hit the hot topics’ list, you are now being watched. Try to be continuously involved in any conversations, posts, chats and/or forums taking place regarding your product, service or campaign.
  • Be innovative and try not to imitate whenever possible. You might use the same social media channels others are utilizing but try making your benefit and reward systems varied. Your audience is not always looking to get a free coffee!
  • Constantly measure the depth of your social media campaign’s fulfillment of goals and returns. The ROI should always be bigger, or at least equal to, the invested money, time, effort and resources that you are putting in the project.
  • Put effort into making the overall social media campaign’s experience fun, engaging and proactive. Adding games, puzzles and teasers can be very addictive!

In a nut shell, though it might be tricky to implement each of the above steps within the right time frame, remember something: impossible is nothing!

And finally, allow me to leave you with the following question to think about: What can be done when your campaign takes a wrong turn? Is there a kill switch for social media campaigns?

Further Readings:

Comments and Reactions

  • http://wwww.communityorganizer20.com/ Debra Askanase

    Hi- great points about the ROI should always be bigger or equal to invested time, money and effort. It's so easy to forget that point. The Target campaign is a great example of a good campaign, and one of the few really successful facebook campaigns. An interesting post to read would be about the struggles of viral campaigns on facebook – it appears to be an “easy” medium for campaigns but what are the elements of a successful campaign on that platform?
    Look forward to reading more posts to come!

  • http://blog.thoughtpick.com/ Beiruta

    Hello Debra…

    First of all, allow me to thank you for taking the time to read the post and comment as well – I know it's a long one but I tried to make it as informative and comprehensive as possible!

    Now, I love what you suggested concerning the “struggles of viral campaigns on Facebook”, I actually had a similar idea I was researching for my next post! I'm sure you'll find it once I cook it, season it up and serve it :)

    Thanks again for you time.

    Have a great day!

  • http://blog.thoughtpick.com/ FadiPick

    Actually I can't see how precisly one can measure ROI for social media campaigns. Such campaigns carry a long term potential and are becoming a must for today's established businesses. It should be a contniuous work of companies to make their products interactive enough and social friendly.

    It is also important for companies to be extra careful when planning for social media compaigns because some can easily backfire if they manage to offend some people in a way or another.

    I really loved the Dunkin Donut's one! It is easy to implement and participate in, it is cool, and so viral! Love it!

  • http://sarawilliams.tumblr.com/ saradotdub

    Great compilation.

    Interesting that two of the top ten have also been stung by bad press in recent months: Dunkin Donuts and the pulled headscarf ad fiasco (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/05/28/dunkin...), and Dell with Della (http://content.dell.com/us/en/home/lifestyle.aspx) and the case of the mortally offended target market.

    Social media campaigns offering a second chance (and, in DD's case, a new audience) to chastised brands? So it would seem…

  • http://www.technihub.com/2009/06/12/top-10-social-media-posts-of-the-week/ Top 10 Social Media Posts of the week. | Technihub

    [...] Social Media Backlash 6. Accelerating Social Media–the Roles of Force and Brand Mass 7. 10 Social Media Campaigns that Rock! Learn How to do the Same! 8. Social media

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    [...] my previous post entitled “10 Social Media Campaigns that Rock…“, I listed and discussed, in details, the 10 best social media campaigns that I was able to [...]

  • http://everybodysagenius.wordpress.com/2009/07/08/hot-new-social-media-case-studies/ Hot, New, Social Media Case Studies « Everybodysagenius’s Weblog

    [...] Here is a link to 10 more that are pretty cool. Including Target, Chuck, Threadless and Ford. Thanks [...]

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  • Aaron

    All great campaigns. You missed one though. Check the Know Your Mojo Twitter campaign for Yahoo! Very cool.

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  • http://www.attorney.org Attorney org

    It is also important for companies to be extra careful when planning for social media compaigns because some can easily backfire if they manage to offend some people in a way or another.

    Attorney

    Moremony

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    I think one of the most important things in any social media campaign is honesty because if people see that they're being misled and lied to, your credibility goes in the toilet and your popularity disappears.

  • http://leslie20.wordpress.com/2009/12/22/its-a-conversation/ It’s a conversation « Labyrinth

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  • PhilBellamyInc

    Loved this post. Social Media changes so much… business plans, marketing plans, etc… a rethink of everything related in getting a brand or product to market.

    One excellent point that stood out for me:
    “Make sure that you apply smart integration with the “right” social media channels that suit your brand image, the product/service you are trying to promote and its value. Not every social media channel will bring about the positive feedback you are waiting for!” – I feel this is an area that is the Achiles Heel of most campaigns and one that marketers would do well to pay attention to, else they may find their campaigns misfiring.

    Keep up the good work.

  • shreyas

    I read your post . it was amazing.Your thought process is wonderful.The way you tell about things is awesome.

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    [...] one of my most retweeted posts, 10 Social Media Campaigns that Rock! Learn How to do the Same!, I listed the top most successful social media created through the different social media channels [...]

  • berman steve

    hi,
    i am trying to run campaign in facebook and i see that it need effort and team to make it happen. My question, is it possible for me to do by only me since i don't have team or should i give this to the consultant out there?

    cheers,
    berman

  • Kiely Jackson

    I am an under graduate of Marketing and as part of my final semester in Uni, i have to develop a social media campaign for a new up and coming chocolate bar. I also have to dreate a Web 2.0 and I am finding it a little confusing. Could any of you guys give me some suggestions? The main social media websites I have been focussing on to date are Facebook, MySpace and Twitter.

    Thanks

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  • Marcus Dane

    I know a lot small businesses using Twitter for less formal dialogues with customers and potential customers. We cannot deny their part on business sales though it is not always sales but more on advertisement. You should first be able to catch others to view you in order to make connections with them that's why you make your self interesting in that social medium and from there take off to establish relevance, trust, and authority respectively. I admit that this is a protracted endeavor than for small businesses to make their own websites. A lot of businesses encourages their fellows to create their own site with an accessible and usable corporate web design or
    ecommerce web site design because there is much space into it for advertising, generating sales, and business exposure unlike social media which works better for social networking development. But given these tips, campaigns on social media can really rock as corporate website designs do.

  • http://rogerewingblog.com Roger Ewing

    I have a residential real estate company and my marketing strategy has been weighted heavily with social media for about 9 months. I have achieved some remarkable success in terms of my web site Google placement. However, I have not been able to truly identify the connective tissue that creates relationships and then results in transactions. I know it is there, just haven't seen it yet.
    Your examples are excellent regarding case studies. Now I need to understand the actual process that is occurring. I think I need to revisit my cross over print/digital interface.
    Thanks for sharing this insightful piece.

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  • sameer_2010

    I havent yet started using linkedin, but after this article I really started considering it, thanks for guiding me, hope I have the time to make my linkedin profile soon and start my own experience, hope its worth it.

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  • Meg

    Hi Kiely
    Did you get any help with this? If you still need help with this contact me at socialmediameg@gmail.com

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    Roger that is one of the biggest obstacles users face. It's often different objectives, and you have to work at it to make your on/offline objectives cohesive.

  • http://rogerewingblog.com Roger Ewing

    Thanks for that. I agree. Since I posted this response I have made sure all my print media pieces, direct mail, flyers, brochures, etc. include my neighborhood blog URL. We will see in a time if this strategy has legs.
    Best wishes,
    Roger

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    Go Beirut

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  • http://blog.thoughtpick.com/ Beiruta

    Glad you enjoyed it! :) I hope you find other articles which you like and find valuable for your line of work :)

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    cheers,
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  • Reshma

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