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6 Creative and Engaging Marketing Projects We Can Learn From

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Direct mail, inserts, and to some extent, even TV and magazine advertising. What do all of these things have in common? If you answered, “They’re largely relics of the past,” you’ve won this round. While many older forms of advertising do survive in some form, the real heart of contemporary marketing lies in online content strategies, which have the potential to deeply engage followers and create unique and loyal relationships with greater rapidity and effectiveness than any other medium.

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6CreativeandEngagingMarketingProjectsWeCanLearnFrom

blog.activatemedia.com/post/55178204461/6-creative-and-engaging-marketing-projects-we-can-learn

Directmail,inserts,andtosomeextent,evenTVandmagazineadvertising.Whatdoallofthesethingshaveincommon?

Ifyouanswered,“They’re largely relicsofthe past,"you’ve wonthisround.Whilemany olderformsofadvertisingdosurvive insome form,the realheartofcontemporary marketingliesinonline contentstrategies,whichhave the potentialtodeeply engage followersandcreate unique andloyalrelationshipswithgreaterrapidity andeffectivenessthanany othermedium.Buta successfulonlinemarketingcampaignrequiresmore thanspeedtypinga three line blogpost.Toreceive,you’ve gottogive—notably,more thanyourcompetitorsbothinyourindustry andinthe online space.The following6creative andengagingmarketingcampaignsare greatexamplesofhowtodojustthat.Let’stake a lookfora littleinspiration.

1.SimplyBusiness’SmallBusinessGuidetoYouTube

Sometimes,the besttoolinyourmarketingboxisknowledge.No,notknowledgeaboutyourproduct,butknowledge thatfillsany informationandskillsgapsyourcustomersmay have.That’sjustwhatsmallbusinessinsurance provider,SimplyBusiness,doeswithitsKnowledge &Community Center,whichfeaturesin-depthresourceslike thisYouTube guide.Here,smallbusinessownerscanfindguidesandtipstoanswerany numberofquestionsandarmthemselveswithskillstheycanactively apply totheirbusinesses.

The YouTube guide islargely representative ofthe resource center,providingextensive resourceswithinthismodular,flowchartguide,withoutsacrificingfunctionality orbecomingtoodense.Thisresource centerisnotable notjustforthe wealthofhelpfulinformationitprovides,butalsobecause it’sconstructedaroundwhatitscustomerbase wants,notwhatthe company wantstoimpose onitscustomers.Thisbuildstrustandrespectaswellasanexpertise reputation,asitwillmake followersfeelthe company really knowswhatsmallbusinessesneed.

LessonLearned:Provideyourcustomerswithhelpful,in-depthresources,andthey’llrewardyouwithloyalty,engagement,andevangelism.[Tweetthis]

2.Sharpie’sTwitterCampaign

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Whatdoyoudowhenyoudiscoveranuntappedmarketofyoungusers,lookingforcreative stimulation?HeadtoTwitter,ofcourse.Oratleast,that’swhatthe everdynamicandengagingbrand,Sharpie,didwiththeirrecentTwittercampaign,whichinviteduserstoshare theircreative workaswellastheirconversationsaboutcreativity by addingthe hashtags#sharpie and#uncapwhatsinside.

The company spreadthe wordfirstthroughpromotedtweetsandthenusedthehashtagstopromote theirequally engaging“GetInspired"YouTube playlists,whichfeaturedinterviewswithartistsusingthe brand.

Before long,the company wasgaining1,000followersperday,fora 6-foldincrease by the endofthe campaign.

LessonLearned:Peoplewanttocreate;betheirexcusetodoso[Tweetthis],whetherthroughastrategichashtagoracontestcallingforusersubmissions.Andforthegreatestbenefits,don’tforgettofoldtheseactivitiesintoyourwidermarketingcampaigns,alaSharpie’sYouTubevideos.

SimpliSafe’sDigitalSecurityQuiz

Oftentimes,togetbuyersinterestedinyourproduct,youneedtotellthemwhyanythingyousay isofuse tothem.Try todothatthroughanad,andpotentialbuyerscanfeellike you’re thatone childinthe roomdancingaroundandshouting,“Lookatme,lookatmeeee!"Doit,onthe otherhand,througha device thatrevealssomethingaboutthe customer,andyou’llsustaininterestformuchgreaterperiodsoftime.That’sthe logicbehindSimpliSafe’sengagingdigitalsecurity quiz,whichtellsusersabouttheircompany throughthe lensoftheirindividualdigitalhabits.

Stepby step,questionby question,quiztakersexamine theironline habitsandreceive expertanswerstofillinthe blanks.Inthisway,the quizishelpfulanditestablishesthecompanyasaknowledgeableindustryexpert.Andwhowouldn’twanttosharethisonsocialmedia?

LessonLearned:Providecustomerswithhelpfulandrevealinginformationbyfocusingonthemfirst[Tweetthis],andbytappingintoalloftheintrinsicmotivationassociatedwithgamification.Thisway,customerswillmuchmoreactivelyengage.

Etsy’sGuestPinners

While mostbusinessesknowthey shouldhave a presence onPinterest,they oftendon’tknowwhatthey shouldpin,especially ifthey don’tfallinthe lifestyle orfoodcategory.Justfollowthe leadofEtsy,the online marketplace forsmall,independentcraftspeople.The company pinsbothfeaturesofitsownproductsanda wide

range ofpinsfromguestpinners.Thiskeepspinsfresh,engagingandunique,andfitswithEtsy’sgoalofusingPinterestnotjustforsalesbutforinspiration.Thatsaid,whenthe company ispinningproductsforsale onthe site,they make sure toinclude properattribution,sothe productcreatorwillbe more likely tomake a

sale.

LessonLearned:Sure,withtheircraftyfocus,EtsyandPinterestmakeanaturalfit,butyoucanhavejustasmuchsuccesswithaguestpinningprogram,whichisalmostavisualformofguestblogging[Tweetthis].Themoreyoudeveloprelationshipswithguestpinners,themorethey’llpromoteyourbrandinturn,andyou’llhaveaproperPinterestcontentstrategy.

ColumbiaSportswear’sGreatMomentsinTryingStuffVideoCampaign

There’sproducttesting,andthenthere’sproducttesting.One isrunofthe mill,the one issohilariousandepic,it’sgottobe itsownvideocampaign.TheColumbia GreatMomentscampaignisfirmly the latter,featuringridiculousproducttests,like howwellbeansdrainthrougha shoe.The testsare alwaysrelevantto

the product—the shoe,forinstance,isspecifically designedtodrainsweat—they’rejusttestedina clearly silly manner.Thisdemonstratesthe company’sdowntoearthnature andwillingnesstopoke funatitself,the perfectformula forpromoting brandloyalty andevangelism.Ofcourse,the company promotedthese videos

very wellonsocialmedia usingthe hashtags#greatmomentsand#tryingstufftofurtherengage users.

LessonLearned:Don’tbeafraidtopokefunatyourownbrandwithsillyproducttests,orothercreativeapproaches[Tweetthis].Justmakesurewhateveryou produceiswithinyourbrandvoiceandstyle.

6.McDonald’sCanada’sOurFood.YourQuestions

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Socialmedia isa gateway toyourcustomers,butwhatliesonthe otherendofthatgate isn’talwaysa publicrelationsspecialists’dream.NobrandknowsthisbetterthanMcDonald’s,whose #McDStoriesTwittercampaignwasmetwithwidespreadderisiononline.The negative storiesfaroutnumberedthe positiveones,withcustomersreportingfindingfingernailsintheirfood,seeingratsinthekitchen,andgainingweight.

  • That,however,didn’tstopMcDonald’sCanada fromlaunchinga muchsavviercampaigncalled,“Ourfood.Yourquestions."The conceptwassimple:Customerswere allowedtoaskorsearchforany questions,andthe company wouldrespondasfrankly aspossible.The campaignwasa massive success,withthousandsofquestionssubmittedsofar,anda greatboosttothe company’simage.Note thatthe key difference here wasthatthe company directly askedfortheircustomers’true experiencesandrespondedinkind,ratherthantweetingoverly nostalgicandclearly commercialtweetslike,“‘Whenumake somethingw/pride,people cantaste it,’-McDpotatosupplier."
  • LessonLearned:Whileyoumaynotbeabletoaffordtohireateamofcustomerservicerepresentativestoansweraslewofquestions,youcanstilltakethemessageoftransparencytoheart.Whynotholdanhourlong,RedditstyleAMAonsocialmedia?Alternatively,youcouldhostaregulareventonyourcompanyblog,like,“YourQuestionsTuesdays"andtackleoneimportantquestionatatime.Themoreyourespondtoallquestions,goodorbad,thegreaterthetrustyou’llbuild[Tweetthis].
  • TheTakeaway
  • Today’sworldofmarketingbringswithitcountlessnewplatformsandsourcesforinspiration.Embracingthesetoolswillallowcompaniestogetcreativeandreachformerlyuntappablemarkets,whilealsocementingcustomerloyalty.Whatwillyournextcreativecampaignentail?Letusknowinthecommentsbelow.
  • Abouttheauthor
  • Luke isa Seattle basedwriterandint[email protected]lukeclum
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