LivingSocial's campaign for the Oscars may provide a signpost for things to come, as brand marketers continue seeking meaningful ways to integrate social media with mass advertising.
The company ran two :30 TV spots during ABC's broadcast, while its chief daily deals competitor Groupon sat on the sidelines, still apparently licking its wounds from the Super Bowl fallout. On that note, LivingSocial's commercials (watch one below) come on the heels of its pre-game Super Bowl ads, which represented the online brand's first foray into the medium. While sounding upbeat about results, Camille Watson, VP of marketing, wouldn't offer subscriber pick-up numbers when it comes to pre-TV-ads LivingSocial vs. post.
"[It] is just the launching point of our TV efforts. We will continue to advertise and monitor the results," she said. "TV so far seems like a very good vehicle for us."
From a new media perspective, what Watson's brand did on Twitter might be more intriguing. LivingSocial had four representatives in Hollywood who posted live updates about the proceedings on Twitter.
Here is a pair of their tweets from Sunday:
Red carpet here we come! Be on the lookout for some exclusive content later in the day. #Oscars
In the Kodak theater. The show is about to begin. Best dresses: Cate Blanchett, Helen Mirren, and Scarlett Johansson. #Oscars
As those examples show, like countless Twitter users on Sunday night, the reps utilized #Oscars as it tweeted about the celebrity-driven event. What's more, it purchased Twitter's Promoted Trend for Monday and used "#Oscars" as its button copy.
According to TwitterCounter.com, the Washington, DC-based brand picked up 728 new followers during the last two days to bring its total to almost 29,500. Watson suggested that Twitter was a natural complementary advertising channel to TV for this campaign.
"We wanted to make a big overall integrated splash around the Oscars," she said. "We thought it would spark conversations. Our spots lent themselves to conversations. And Twitter provided that outlet for people to talk about them…We had been planning it for a while. We got in with Twitter months ago."
Meanwhile, JCPenney, another Oscars TV advertiser that integrated Twitter into its campaign, says it's happy with the results of a quiz-based contest on the micro-blogging site. Katie Coutlas, spokesperson for the Plano, TX-based retailer, said the brand picked up 239 followers on Sunday night and 49 more since then. She said JCPenney normally only picks up 50 new followers a month.
"Additionally, we received 468 '@mentions' - our average '@mentions' is also 50 a month, " Coutlas said. "With this contest, we beat our monthly averages in just one night."
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Christopher Heine was a senior writer for ClickZ through June 2012. He covered social media, sports/entertainment marketing, retail, and more. Heine's work has also appeared via Mashable, Brandweek, DM News, MarketingSherpa, and other tech- and ad-centric publications. USA Today, Bloomberg Radio, and The Los Angeles Times have cited him as an expert journalist.
March 19, 2014