There are now more than 45 million social media users in the UK, and around 3.8 billion around the world.
Chances are you found this blog through social media and you might even be double-screening right now as another viral headline vies for your attention.
Stick with us for a while as we showcase five fantastic social media marketing campaigns that have made a splash on the web – from the brands we know and love to small businesses whose bright ideas made a big impact!
#1 YALDI IPA
In August 2020, a hilarious Twitter exchange between supermarket chain Aldi and international pub and brewery Brewdog led to the creation of a whole new product.
When the latter’s founder James Watt clocked that Aldi had been selling an ‘Anti Establishment IPA’ in the same distinctive blue packaging as his own brand’s colours, he challenged them publicly by proposing his own parody. Watt christened it ‘YALDI IPA’ and shared it on Twitter with an accompanying photoshopped image and the challenge “Maybe our friends @AldiUK will even sell it in their stores?”
The supermarket was quick to respond, replying, ‘We would have gone with ALD IPA, send us a crate and we’ll talk?’ Not to be outdone, Watt updated his photoshopped image according and wrote back, ‘We have changed the name to ALD IPA & we will send a case your way. Looking forward to making this happen.’
The collaboration went on sale that same month, and for every case sold, both companies pledged to plant one tree, honouring Brewdog’s commitment to sustainability.
A lesson in razor-sharp real-time marketing for us all – a well-planned social media strategy is golden, but engaging instantly with other users, even rivals ‘borrowing’ your ideas, sparks stimulating conversations that capture people’s imaginations
Brewdog also made headlines at the start of the pandemic after they started producing hand sanitiser which was both made available for sale to the general public and donated to NHS and emergency workers
#2 Getty Museum Challenge
The J. Paul Getty Museum is amongst the countless institutions forced into closure by lockdown, so to reach out to art enthusiasts around the world, their social media came up with a brilliant idea in the form of the hashtag #GettyMuseumChallenge.
The campaign asked users to recreate classic works of art from the comfort of their own homes, forcing people to get imaginative with props, outfits and poses. And as you might expect, the internet did not disappoint.
Participants put their most creative ideas to the test, with reinterpretations of masterpieces from everyone from Picasso to Ven Gogh and Da Vinci to Vermeer in their own living rooms and back yards.
This was a genius example of authentic user-generated content which capitalised on a wellspring of audience creativity at exactly the right time –– for many of us, lockdown was a chance to broaden our cultural horizons, exploring new music, literature and indeed art, and this cleverly encouraged users to engage under the banner of the Getty Museum brand.
KFC is one of the world’s most iconic fast-food brands, famed for its secret recipe chicken, which owes its success to a closely-guarded combination of just eleven herbs and spices.
And in October 2017, one beady-eyed user spotted that the brand’s Twitter account was following just eleven others. All five members of pop group The Spice Girls and six individuals named Herb. It’s uncertain how long the brand was sitting on this hilarious combo before its discovery, but once it was spotted, social media went wild.
Eagled-eyed Mike Edgett, who originally made the discovery, was handsomely rewarded by the brand,receiving a bespoke painting of himself and the Colonel, plus 52 gift cards worth $5 each.
It’s not clear when, but KFC have since followed just one more person – a private account by the name of Flora Melchionna. It’s uncertain what her connection to the brand is or how she has captured the colonel’s attention, but watch this space.
#4 The Wild Detectives
Unlike some of the other brands on this list, you may not have heard of The Wild Detectives. That’s because they’re a bookstore based in Dallas, Texas, one of many independents hit hard by the pandemic
On 26th April 2020 they took to Instagram to deliver the news to their customers that “The Wild Detectives bookstore is no more.” It wasn’t all doom and gloom though – they had decided instead to rebrand as a travel agency
And ever since they’ve been connecting explorers all over the world with their dream adventure. Simply head over to their website, tell them where you want to go and they’ll present you with a selection of ‘trips’. Once you’ve selected your travel package, they will mail it to you, where you can enjoy the best type of adventure from the comfort (and safety) of your own home.
The announcement was cause for concern to many users, who feared that the bookstore would be closing their doors for good, but thankfully this innovative rebrand has kept The Wild Detectives afloat during tough times and their travel agency is still going strong.
#5 Domino’s Dom Bot
Social media marketing has seen some innovative uses of the most unexpected features, and not even messaging apps have been spared the advertiser’s touch.
Pizza chain Domino’s was amongst the first to capitalise on these fantastic functions, creating ‘Dom’, a savvy chatbot who helps users place orders through Facebook Messenger. Users simply create an Easy Order account via the Domino’s website, and thereafter Dom helps deliver every pizza they order direct to their door.
But this ingenious campaign didn’t end there – Dom was also part of one of Tinder’s earliest advertising campaignsUsers of the popular dating app could ‘match’ with the bot, who delivered saucy pick-up lines and cheesy puns (much like these), winning the hearts of famished pizza fans.
You know what they say – if you can’t find a match made in heaven, you can at least find a pizza that comes close.
These are just five social media campaigns that have well and truly blown our minds. Have you seen any spectacular displays in the social world? Which magic moguls have flexed their marketing prowess on your feed? Send us a Tweet and let us know which clever campaigns we’ve missed off this list!