Porsche Fans Rally Brand Support Among Network to Win Grand Prize

To celebrate Porsche’s 5 million Facebook likes, they made it possible for each and every fan to contribute to the design of a fan version of the 911 Carrera 4S model. The initiative began Feb. 4 with Porsche asking “the best expert panel in the world: our fans” to choose an exterior color. In the following weeks, fans voted on additional features from the specific wheel to the car’s interior color. Porsche revealed the final product in on Facebook on Aug. 2.

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With the car designed, the brand is now offering one fan and a friend the chance to get behind the wheel at the Porsche Experience Center in Silverstone Circuit in the UK. According to the Mashable article, “In order to participate, fans need to show Porsche how many public Porsche fans they have in their friend lists. The user with the highest number of Porsche Facebook fans will win the trip.”

Source: Mashable

Why I’m Curious:

It’s not new for brands to elicit fan input for their products. Whether the brand ultimately releases the “fan designed” offering can vary, but social is the perfect place to ask for this type of consumer input. It makes your community feel like you value what they have to say. However, what I find interesting is how fans enter to win the grand prize trip/test drive. Not only must you like Porsche, but your friend network must like Porsche as well. Your ranking ultimately relies on your Facebook friends. You must rallying your network to support the car maker. Would you rally your friends to “Like” Porsche so you could win?

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Mentos Creates Personalized News For Facebook Users

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As part of their “Stay Fresh” campaign, Mentos has launched the Fresh News Facebook app which allows users to create personalized video news reports based on their Facebook activity.

The bulletins make up a 24-hour news channel that serves up a constant stream of humorous news reports by pulling in material from users’ updates on Facebook and connected social media accounts, including Foursquare. Two news anchors present a satirical show highlighting a user’s recent escapades, and emphasizing how “fresh” the subject may or may not be, depending on what he or she has been posting lately.
Create your news here. (Source: AdAge)

Why I’m Curious:

As Adage put it, Mentos is clearly “capitalizing on the narcissism that fuels social media”. And they do so in a humorous, sharable way to create a one of a kind experience for the user. The app allows also Mentos to access a huge list of data that can then be used in countless ways to learn more about their target and create future content and initiatives that will appeal to them.

Text from the app permission: Mentos Fresh News would like to access your public profile, friend list, friend requests, News Feed, relationships, relationship interests, birthday, work history, education history, events, groups, hometown, interests, current city, photos, questions, religious and political views, follows and followers, website, personal description, likes, music activity, games activity and your friends’ relationships, birthdays, events, current cities and religious and political views.”

Unicef Turns Facebook’s Social Network into a Water Network

– Jordan

Unicef has create a new way to donate Facebook. The app help to give clean water to others around the world. The campaign is unique by encouraging you to select two friends to also donate, creating a potentially fast spreading campaign through the social network.

From Creativity-Online:

Droga5 New York ushers UNICEF’s Tap Project into its 7th year with a new social campaign that turns Facebook — the world’s largest social network — into a “water network.” Held annually during March’s World Water Month, the effort aims to provide clean water and sanitation to kids around the world.

The award-winning Tap Project originated as a simple request to diners at New York restaurants to pay $1 for a glass of tap water on World Water Day and eventually expanded to similar initiatives across the country. Now with the new Facebook push, those wishing to support the cause can visit the site, donate $5 via PayPal or text, and then pick two Facebook friends, who will receive water, as well as a message asking them to donate.

Facebook users thus turn into “taps,” and their networks, into “pipes” carrying clean drinking water. As more and more people join the initiative, users will be able to see their “water network” grow all over the world. Celebrities Alyssa Milano, Heidi Klum, Kristen Bell, Seth Rogen, Sting and Kevin Spacey are all beginning their own networks and tweeting about the campaign.

Last year’s campaign featured a simple, powerful spot directed by Brent Harris at Skunk, featuring kids all over the world thirstily gulping down a mug of water, as well as a print campaign designed by artist Tavis Coburn.

UNICEF Tap Project on Facebook

Why I’m curious:

I am very interested in the success/failure that this campaign may have. Once you donate you must choose two other people to open your tap to, sort of strong arming them to participate or feel the pressure of shutting off the flow of water. This technique could either make this campaign thrive or kill it entirely.

Save the Battleship!

Everybody loves the game Monopoly.  Most of us played it as a kid, but lately the only time you really hear about the game is when McDonald’s has it’s annual contest.  In an effort to get the game back in the news and get fans reengaged, Hasbro has launched a campaign to refresh one of the iconic game pieces.  From the Facebook app:

In an unlucky roll of the dice, every Monopoly token has landed in jail. One will be locked up forever and replaced with a new piece. Luckily, you’ll have the chance to vote to save your favorite token every day. Don’t skip your turn!

Here’s what it looks like:

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Why I’m Curious

I’m always interested in ways that brands find ways to reinvent themselves and leverage those reinventions to garner social buzz.  This campaign combines a strong paid and earned media campaign with a highly shareable experience – people are sometimes pretty passionate about their Monopoly game piece.  The experience has people talking and will ultimately have a real effect on the product.

Skittles Gives Fans Telekinetic Powers

Skittles gave fans in Australia and New Zealand were given the unique opportunity to move a Skittle on the Internet using their mind.

The app hosted on the brand’s Facebook page used eye-tracking and users’ webcams to translate each movement into a command given to a WiFi-controlled robot attached a single Skittle.

Paul Nagy, executive creative director from Clemenger BBDO Sydney explained the thinking behind it all to Campaign Brief: “Until now, telekinesis has only ever existed in science fiction movies. By adding a heap of Skittles awesomeness to some new state-of-the-art technology, some of which we developed ourselves, we’re enabling people to move Skittles in a way they’ve never been able to before.” More at The Next Web

Why I’m Curious

Skittles’ social presence is zany – the less sense it makes the better. But they’ve been able to build up their brand in this way across platforms and build a large, dedicated fan following. And adding telekinetic powers to their Facebook page is definitely a good incentive to get more people there. It’s also one of the better users of tabs I’ve seen – no quizzes, games, or challenges – just log in and move a Skittle with your eyes. Where else can you do that?

The Society of Good Taste

Rather than thinking of ways to grow the size of its Facebook page, Grey Poupon decided to turn it into an exclusive club that actually turns away fans from liking the page. The mustard brand launched a new campaign, “The Society of Good Taste,” that will screen fans who attempt to like the page.

From Mashable,

Those users who want to become a fan of Grey Poupon’s Facebook page will have to apply for membership through an application on the page called The Society Of Good Taste. The app scans your Facebook page to learn more about your interests, friends and writing style and from this, it automatically assigns you a score which determines whether your tastes are refined enough to be a Grey Poupon fan. If you just try to like the page without going through this process, Grey Poupon will delete you as one of its fans.

Why I’m Curious

Grey Poupon was able to put a fun spin on the fact that they had less thank 25K fans, and very few people actually engaged on the page.  “The Society of Good Taste” gives a sense of exclusivity (although I’m sure a majority of people who take the test make the cut), which results in Facebook users wanting to be a part of something they normally wouldn’t.

I’m curious to see in a month or two how the content evolves on the Facebook page, including the voice, and whether the fans remain engaged, or drop off.

GE Adds Health Goals to Facebook Timelines

One of the biggest motivating factors in getting people to exercise is social accountability. GE has tapped into this insight (and the upcoming Olympic Games) with their new Facebook app HealthyShare, which allows you to post your fitness goals, track your progress and cheer for others/call them out straight from your Timeline. Users are rewarded points for every engagement and see a leaderboard displays point count…turning working out into a friendly competition. Plus, with the Work Out With An Olympian feature, users are given challenges and get to work out ‘with’ four Olympic athletes.

Why I’m Curious: We’ve seen a variety of examples of the gamification and socialization of the health/fitness industry. But the idea of setting goals, publicizing them on your timeline, and getting support (or competing) with others can go beyond this vertical. The financial services, volunteer, and travel industries could certainly leverage some of these mechanics to help their target achieve their personal goal.

Pepsi Next’s ‘Real Life’ Facebook Connect

By now we’ve all seen plenty of Facebook Connect apps that give users a fun, personalized experience (think Take This Lollipop, etc.). Pepsi Next has decided to take it a step further with improv peeps from Funny or Die for their “Internet Taste Test.” It works like this – fans send in their profile for consideration, then Pepsi will “analyze their Facebook persona.” Then using 12 Funny or Die improv comdians and 4 sound stages in LA for 5 days, they’ll send back a taste test of PepsiNext (as performed by the comedian) within 24 hours. Shiv Singh, head of digital for PepsiCo Beverages said “It will be very close to who they actually are.” (more at Mashable)

Why I’m Curious

This is an interesting way to offer personalized content to fans via social media. Sure it’s cool to have your profile picture pop up in a picture frame like those other experiences, but having an improv comedian impersonate you is way more fun. It’s kinda like a video caricature, and lots of fans are submitting for the chance to get one. While Pepsi possibly recreate everyone’s tasting experience this way, the videos are funny (even if you don’t know the person) and easily shareable in a way the other personalized content isn’t. So who’s going to submit their profile?

Walmart = retail innovator?

-Alina

Walmart will be rolling out a new Facebook app this holiday season called Shopycat. With the permission of a Facebook user and their family or friends, Shopycat uses data from activity and profiles on the social network to provide gift suggestions. They provide different ideas based on budget and help you find them online or in-store. Additionally, Walmart’s research deparment @WalmartLabs is working on creating a social network for the chain’s stores. 200 million customers visit Walmart weekly but there is no easy way for them to share opinions and interact with others while they’re shopping. Using their mobile phones to interact, customers would be able to ask other shoppers in the store questions or provide answers, seek and give opinions on products, and alert them to deals and special offers.

Why I’m Curious:

It was only a matter of time before a traditional retailer jumped on the social commerce train (Gifts.com and Hunch had previously partnered to create the GiftFinder app, which works in much the same way). I think these examples show Walmart playing to both their strengths and weaknesses as a brand. Strength: they sell everything – so show people how they can do all their holiday shopping in one store. Weakness: their in-store shopping experience is a mess – so let consumers help each other (and free up your staff in the meantime).

Second Life + Facebook = Shaker

-gabriella

Shaker is a Facebook app that aims to make the social networking experience more like a night out at the bar.

“Shaker looks at profile information to show what else you may have in common with seemingly random people in the room. For example, you may have the same birthday as someone. Or you may both like the same movie or band. Other elements include proximity based chat, a Tweet wall, and a “smart phone” social discovery tool to look up information about people in the room.” (via TechCrunch)

The app has already received $3 million in funding, and it was the winner of TechCrunch Disrupt 2011.  After an initial 80,000 MAUS, Shaker had limit its beta operation to about 500 invitations, because the ‘bars’ were too crowded.

Why I’m Curious 

It’s gamey.  It’s hang-outy.  Shaker is definitely more engaging than the usual Facebook experience of interacting with the few people you are close with, and silently observing everyone else outside of that group.  It’s another app/tool that’s offering real-time hangouts – but unlike Google+, Shaker floats your picture above an avatar and drops you in a virtual bar.  The concept is both a intriguing, and also a little disturbing…

Apps like Shaker could become pretty interesting in the future with the new Facebook Open Graph — making it possible for avatars to hangout with media (Shaker already incorporates a playlist from SoundCloud, but it’s not controlled by users) and just share more.  Shaker also offers the opportunity that real-life bars already take advantage of — sponsored parties and mixers — an interested way for brands to get involved in the experience.

Mentos wants to know: How Vain Are You? New Facebook App with Viral Potential.

–Jocelyn

Are any of your Facebook friends boring or vain or in need of a love-life makeover? Well, help is on the way from Mentos.

The candy brand has rolled out an app on its Facebook Page that features Life Guidance videos from the brand’s guru-like spokesman Dragee. The videos automatically integrate information from the recipient’s Facebook Page. For instance, in the “Vain” video, Dragee notes how many times the person uses “I” or “me” in his or her status updates and includes some recent examples.

The videos, which evoke the 70s and 80s Dharma Initiative movies on Lost, with their skips and cheesy sound quality, are also cleverly designed to camouflage their customizability. For instance, Dragee walks behind a column when he says the person’s name, so you can’t see his lips move. Dragee’s assistant, Rick, also holds up blank pieces of paper, on which information from the Facebook profiles are projected.

Mentos introduced the Dragee character in February with some equally wacky videos. But the app, created by The Martin Agency and Ted Perez + Associates, has more viral potential. After all, who doesn’t have a vain, boring or lovelorn friend?

Why I’m Curious:

I am a sucker for anything that pulls in a user’s social graph. This is because it’s such a small yet brilliant personalization that makes a person want to organically share it with friends. Intel Museum of Me, Orangina’s First FB Friend, the Doggelganger — its hook is that it’s personalized. For any FB apps being created, figuring out ways to pull in one’s social graph should definitely be a top consideration.