Home  › Media › Media Buying
chipotle-scarecrow-1

Four Visual Social Campaigns That Riff on Tradition

  |  September 20, 2013   |  Comments

Before you default to old platform stand-ins for your next campaign, explore the potential of image-based social media.

As digital platforms evolve and new media channels continue to emerge, marketers are forced to get creative. It isn't only a matter of cutting through ad clutter and demonstrating your brand's social media savvy. Social sites are where consumers are spending their time, and brands need to be there to receive them.

You've seen the numbers: Instagram just reached 150 million active monthly users; Twitter's Vine has 40 million, tripling its user base since June; and YouTube recently topped 1 billion unique visitors per month. It isn't a coincidence that all three platforms are built on a foundation of visual content. Consumers respond to photos and video, with campaigns that showcase visual assets often seeing high response rates. Visual content is more easily recalled, and more likely to be shared. When it appears on social platforms, it also affords marketers the opportunity to riff on traditional promotional tactics in a new, more viral way.

Before you default to old platform stand-ins for your next campaign, explore the potential of image-based social media. Mix and match promotions and platforms in unique ways. Flip your conventional ad strategy on its head. Here are some ideas to get you started.

Swap site-based editorials for those on Instagram

New York Fashion Week has officially come to a close, but it still lingers online where consumers can find limitless photos and clips from the event on magazine sites, YouTube, and Pinterest - which this year launched a dedicated Fashion Week hub.

Social media is a natural partner for brands looking to distribute visual assets in digital form, but Vogue went a step further by creating and publishing a fashion editorial on Instagram. The brand recruited a photographer to shoot three "fashion stories" using an iPhone, and posted them to Instagram along with the hashtag #VogueInstaFashion.

091913-wegert-1

"It's the first thing we check in the morning and the last thing we look at before bed," Vogue says of its decision to leverage the popular photo- and video-sharing social network. To ensure that photos were seen and shared, each shoot also included a unique hashtag, and the images were republished to Vogue.com.

Use YouTube to extend your reach

To date over 4 million people have watched Chipotle's animated short, "The Scarecrow," which lives only on YouTube and the brand's site. The film depicts a world in which all food is processed until a displaced scarecrow provides a more natural alternative.

091913-wegert-2

As branded content it's a quality piece, but "The Scarecrow" – created in partnership with Moonbot Studios – serves another purpose: to promote Chipotle's new branded mobile game. Chipotle recognized the importance of investing in visual material that served a dual purpose and extended its reach; while the mobile game is available only to iPhone and iPad users, anyone can watch the YouTube film, which sends the same brand message.

Appeal to busy consumers with promos on Instagram Video

What better way to promote a film about a tech legend than with a movie trailer that lives on a social site? The 15-second trailer for the movie "Jobs," portraying the life and career of Apple chief executive Steve Jobs – was posted to Instagram with two different hashtags, one promoting the trailer, and one relating to the film itself. Open Road Films, the studio behind "Jobs," has since released two additional Instagram video trailers, each offering clips from the film based on a theme: "Jobs on Problem Solving" and "Jobs on Recruiting."

091913-wegert-3

This isn't the first movie trailer built with social media – earlier this year Vine was used to promote "The Wolverine" in just 6 seconds – and it won't be the last. Social video services like these are ideal for distributing promo teasers. In addition to being easy to make and easy for consumers to share, branded social videos appeal to social media users' love of succinct content.

Engage audiences by crowdsourcing content with Vine

Last month, vacation rental service Airbnb announced a unique contest idea that leveraged the Vine video platform to interact with fans. The company invited consumers to help create a crowdsourced film comprised of user-submitted Vines that were spliced together to impart a cohesive narrative about adventure and travel.

Called "Hollywood & Vines," the four-minute social media movie follows a piece of office paper as it becomes an airplane, a boat, and an origami swan making its way cross-country. It's a highly collaborative project incorporating over 100 video submissions, all made with a singular goal in mind. While the video premiered on the Sundance Channel it's even more at home on its microsite, where users can see how it was made. Between the film and the backstory, this effort comes off as immersive and memorable.

091913-wegert-4

It's an exciting time in social media, when brand marketers can challenge marketing tradition and stretch the limits of their imaginations. Using a blend of visual marketing and social media can help you stand out and keep consumers on their toes.

ClickZ Live Toronto Twitter Canada MD Kirstine Stewart to Keynote Toronto
ClickZ Live Toronto (May 14-16) is a new event addressing the rapidly changing landscape that digital marketers face. The agenda focuses on customer engagement and attaining maximum ROI through online marketing efforts across paid, owned & earned media. Register now and save!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tessa Wegert

Tessa Wegert is a business reporter and former media strategist specializing in digital. In addition to writing for ClickZ since 2002, she has contributed to such publications as USA Today, Marketing Magazine, Mashable, and The Globe and Mail. Tessa manages marketing and communications for Enlighten, one of the first full-service digital marketing strategy agencies servicing such brands as Bioré, Food Network, illy, and Hunter Douglas. She has been working in online media since 1999.

COMMENTSCommenting policy

comments powered by Disqus

Get ClickZ Media newsletters delivered right to your inbox. Subscribe today!

COMMENTS

UPCOMING EVENTS

Featured White Papers

ion Interactive Marketing Apps for Landing Pages White Paper

Marketing Apps for Landing Pages White Paper
Marketing apps can elevate a formulaic landing page into a highly interactive user experience. Learn how to turn your static content into exciting marketing apps.

eMarketer: Redefining Mobile-Only Users: Millions Selectively Avoid the Desktop

Redefining 'Mobile-Only' Users: Millions Selectively Avoid the Desktop
A new breed of selective mobile-only consumers has emerged. What are the demos of these users and how and where can marketers reach them?

Jobs

    • Contact Center Professional
      Contact Center Professional (TCC: The Contact Center) - Hunt ValleyLooking to join a workforce that prides themselves on being routine and keeping...
    • Recruitment and Team Building Ambassador
      Recruitment and Team Building Ambassador (Agora Inc.) - BaltimoreAgora, www.agora-inc.com, continues to expand! In order to meet the needs of our...
    • Design and Publishing Specialist
      Design and Publishing Specialist (Bonner and Partners) - BaltimoreIf you’re a hungry self-starter, creative, organized and have an extreme...