Hallmark inserts itself into the preexisting #birthdayfail social conversation with a video campaign featuring Jase and Si Robertson from Duck Dynasty.
Two members of A&E's Duck Dynasty, which Hallmark calls "America's favorite reality TV family," have teamed up with the greeting card brand to tell consumers that the best way to "leave a lasting impression on a loved one's birthday is with a greeting card." It's Hallmark's first video effort geared only toward the social space.
The intention is to remind consumers about greeting cards in a humorous way, while also pushing the idea that "a Facebook post is a like, but a greeting card is a love," a Hallmark rep says.
The rep is also quick to point out the brand's partnership is specifically with Jase and Si Robertson, stars of the A&E reality series Duck Dynasty, not Duck Dynasty itself.
They are featured in four online videos, in which they "use their own unique style of humor to depict what not to do on a loved one's birthday... in other words, the birthday ‘fail,'" Hallmark says.
As of November 22, the Robertson videos, which first posted October 8, range from about 59,000 to 139,000 views.
"We were looking for someone to partner with and were trying to find someone who was funny and had a large social following and we actually do have greeting cards with Duck Dynasty, so there's a partnership already in the market. So the partnership with Jase and Si felt perfect," the rep says. "One of our videos launched around the time of this season's opener, which had 10 or 12 million tune in and we thought, ‘Wow -- we're hitting on something right.'"
In fact, according to a press release from A&E after the season four premiere in August, the episode became the number one nonfiction series telecast in cable history with 11.8 million viewers, including 6.3 million viewers between the ages of 25 and 54.
Furthermore, Jase and Si have sizable Twitter presences -- @JaseDuckman has 1.6 million followers and @Siduckdynasty has 336,000 -- while Duck Dynasty itself has 7 million likes on Facebook.
In addition to the Robertson videos, the #birthdayfail series also includes a separate video Hallmark produced, which lags behind with about 1,300 views.
According to a Hallmark rep, the #birthdayfail program launched in August after the brand saw a lot of organic chatter around the #birthdayfail hashtag.
"We loved watching that happen and thought maybe this is something we could be part of," the rep says. "We decided to get the message across to young moms or Millennials or those who are more socially inept, that a Facebook message is great, but unless it's a greeting card -- and specifically a Hallmark greeting card -- [it's not a] birthday win."
The initiative also includes shareable graphics of #birthdayfails and featured blog posts from partner bloggers.
The campaign will run through mid-December, when the rep says, "We're going to take a beat and focus on the holiday season and reassess for the next year."
In addition to Facebook and Twitter posts, Hallmark is promoting the campaign with banner ads and preroll ads.
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Lisa Lacy is senior staff writer at ClickZ. In addition to ClickZ, her work has appeared in The Huffington Post, The Luxury Spot, LearnVest, MarthaStewart.com, GoodHousekeeping.com, amNewYork, and The Wall Street Journal. She's a graduate of Columbia's School of Journalism.
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