Oreo Spot Tells the Story of Mel’s Mini Mini Mart

The Martin Agency created a long form video for the Mini Oreo “Wonderfilled” campaign. Reminiscent of Wes Anderson and Dr. Seuss, it’s a whimsical tale of a mini roadside shop that sells only Mini Oreos.

 

Why I’m Curious

Long form video is picking up in the digital space as a new medium for brands to tell their story. From Beats by Dre to IBM, many brands are dreaming up creative ways to entertain their audience. An interesting fact about this video is that the team at Martin sold the idea by building a set and shooting the first version in their garage over a weekend. I’m interested to see if this video boosts Mini Oreos sales, and if it will lead to similar work in the future.

Could Facebook become relevant again?

Image

It seems there might be a rebirth of Facebook on the horizon. Tech news sites constantly trumpet the demise of Facebook, but I imagine it might not be as imminent as it seems. Are there ways to return to the golden days of Facebook, before FarmVille requests, family dramas and TMI moments, and a steady stream of irrelevant Likes?

Today I saw an article on PSFK about how one guy made Facebook work again, both as a web service and a social network. He made his experience better by going from 1,500 to 100 friends. Anyone who didn’t reflect who he was, or that he wasn’t interested in seeing in real life, was off the list. Doing this improved the quality of his Facebook feed, but also improved his experience with many of the services that were linked to his account.

This got me curious… For what reasons to people decide to give Facebook another shot? And what are their tactics for achieving it?

 

 

Missed Connection: Chromeo

Screen Shot 2014-02-21 at 9.56.16 AM
Chromeo, the electrofunk group recently listed a missed connection for “White Women.”  This poetic yet sultry listing is actually an ad for their new album release, hence the “White Women” title.  The ad/listing features lyrics from one of the songs on the album, “Come Alive” that is supposed to launch May 12, 2014.

Why I’m Curious

Social media and the internet has really changed the way music artists promote their music and make it available to their fans.  In this day and age an artist can’t grow without advertising through social media.  I thought this was a really clever idea by the duo, Chromeo.  Not only are they hitting their target audience who most likely reads missed connections but they found a fun and interesting way to promote their album in which no artist has done before.

This ad/listing reminds me of the Mindy show advertisements on Tindr where users could swipe to like Mindy and it would automate a message promoting the show.  These types of ads draw in users and fans because it is out of the ordinary and excites the audience.  If I happen to be on missed connections and saw song lyrics of an artist I am definitely going to at least look up the band/group to learn more.  I hope to see more advertisements in this form as they can really create a lot of buzz.

Coca-Cola Social Media Guard cures people’s addiction to Twitter, Facebook and Instagram

While social media is a fun way to connect with friends and family virtually, often it takes away the excitement of an of in person contact—eye contact, facial expression recognition etc. BUT Coke has come up with a solution…..the social media guard—which ironically just looks like a dog cone—and makes it impossible for people to look down at their phones. The company has branded the cones and viewers can actually purchase them if they want.

Why I am curious:
The brand is extremely successful in social so it would seem they would not go for a tactic like this, but it’s nice that they still emphasize that real life tangible experiences are better then online. I think they have spun this in a cute and funny way and I am curious to see if anyone would actually buy the cones. Could be funny.

Ajax Social Wipes

To promote Ajax’s new product, Spray N’ Wipe, the brand created a landing page that allow users to clean out their social media feed.  Users simply have to login with Facebook or Twitter and the tool will help them clean out accounts that they want to unfollow.

The site scans users’ social media pages to identify possible “stains” to wipe.

Why I’m Curious: 

Ajax perfectly transfered Spray N’ Wipe’s product benefit to social media.  It is a very simple execution that highly resonates with social media users and even benefit them.  When thinking about your next social campaign, think about the one product message that you want to tell and translate the same idea to an online behavior.

A Full House Renunion

Full House, the early 90s TV show, has a space in many a twenty-something year olds’ hearts. The Dannon-owned Greek yogurt brand, Oikos, is tapping into this during this year’s Super Bowl.

The brand has rolled out a microsite, OikosBromance, in advance of the big game. The site features a variety of short videos featuring the three lead men from Full House – Stamos, Saget, and Coulier (Uncle Joey) with the campaign wrapper “Fuel Your Pleasure.”

Main teaser spot:

Why I am Curious:

While Full House definitely still has a nostalgic factor (and John Stamos is still quite popular), I wonder how this reunion will actually help sell yogurt.  In some senses, the fact that Stamos is of Greek heritage actually may offend some people, perhaps playing into a stereotype   I do like the idea of focusing the campaign around a group of male friends as I think this will help break the perception that Greek yogurt is for women.

Here’s to seeing if this bromance reunion goes viral!

Take a Peek

We have experienced an explosion of photo and video sharing with the success of apps such as Instagram, and more recently Snapchat, the platform that lets users send 10-second messages that disappear after they’ve been viewed. PeekInToo, a new app from Greece, offers a real-time, virtual glimpse into an anonymous person’s life for just 12 seconds.

Taking “people-watching” to the next level, PeekInToo is a global social network that lets users be nosy for a short amount of time. Using a map to navigate, users select a location nearby — or on the other side of the world, if they wish — and pick another user who is accepting requests. The recipient receives a notification that someone wants to ‘Peek’ and they can accept or decline, before holding up their camera to let the other user see what they’re seeing in real time. The video exchange service can be used to simply satisfy a curiosity, but also to see what’s going on near them or in a specific location. If video from a location of interest isn’t currently available, users can also use the PeekShout function in order to request a feed. Viewers can also rate others’ video.

Why I’m Curious:

While most people hop on the social media trends and partake in sharing tidbits about their lives, many are also particular to who they share with and use privacy settings. Do you think there would be enough people that would be willing to share their lives with strangers?

MTV Allows Fans to Unlock Miley

This past week MTV aired Miley: The Movement, a documentary on Miley Cyrus.  Following the premiere, the network encouraged fans to tweet using the hashtag #Unlock Miley.  When fans tweeted enough with the hashtag, two exclusive videos would be unlocked.

Unlock-Miley

From Mashable:

If her rabid fans — dubbed “Smilers” — post enough Twitter messages with the hashtag #UnlockMiley, they will unlock two videos that can be viewed only on MTV’s iOS app. MTV launched the #UnlockMiley challenge immediately after the documentary aired. The bonus footage (one involves her conversation with Britney Spears) will eventually also appear in the 90-minute deluxe edition of Miley: The Movement, which will air on Oct. 6 at 8 p.m. ET.

Why I’m Curious:

MTV drove increased interest in their documentary by creating a post- “event” experience. Providing fans with additional content (and a site that tracks their collective progress) continues the conversation in the social space post the premiere date.  MTV also positions themselves as fan advocates, giving Miley’s fans what they want – more Miley. I’m curious to see how this resonates with her fans and if it translates into increased awareness/TV ratings.

Urban Outfitters Rewards Social Savvy Customers

Urban Outfitters, teenage hipster retailer heaven, is integrating marketing and social media with a new rewards system to revamp their Urban On app, thereby killing two birds with one stone. The social networking app allows users to upload photos of themselves in Urban merchandise and syncs with their social networks. Now, every time a user mentions the company on Twitter or Instagram, they are awarded points and these reward points provide exclusive perks such as advanced warning of sales, early access to merchandise as well as concert tickets.

Screen-Shot-2013-09-26-at-7.41.23-PM

 

The intention is for the app to provide the company data about its customers while also giving them something in return.

Why I’m Curious

I think this is a great win-win for both Urban Outfitters and the customers that shop there. The incentive aspect is a great way for UO to obtain the data they need, while giving shoppers what they want. I’m going to get the app now!

Vogue Holds Fashion Shoot on Instagram

Scrapping the SLR in place of an iPhone, Vogue recently commissioned photographer Michael O’Neal to document the stories and outfits of three models on Instagram, linking together each story with a hashtag.

Source: DesignTAXI

1

 

Instagram Vogue Screen Shot 2013-09-20 at 3.18.04 PM Screen Shot 2013-09-20 at 3.18.17 PM Screen Shot 2013-09-20 at 3.18.28 PM Screen Shot 2013-09-20 at 3.18.40 PM

Why I’m Curious

With the epic success of Facebook pages like Humans of New York and the explosion of Instagram as an artist platform for everyone, understated and honest visuals have come to drive as much (if not more) engagement and intrigue as flashy, high-end photo shoots. While some might say this represents a shift in what people find engaging, I would argue that we now have evidence to support what humans have found interesting all along – creative rooted in humanity. After all, isn’t it an advertising 101 principle that the best creative work places the acknowledgement of human-based insights front and center?

But the key takeaway isn’t necessarily that brands need to coat all ads with an Instagram layer or two, rather, that speaking to “consumers” with a humanized voice truly equates to greater public interest. And when we’re in the game of attracting eyeballs, isn’t that a win for everyone?

Coca-Cola Integrates Live Tweets into TV Ad

Busy schedules, smartphones and on-demand entertainment has gotten in the way on family bonding time, especially at dinner. In Romania, 60% of people do not eat meals together, instead they eat dinner alone in front of the TV. Coca-Cola wanted to change this, and enlisted the help of MRM Worldwide to integrate live tweets into a TV spot.

From PSFK,

At the bottom of the ad, there was a text bar that hosted tweets from fans featuring the hashtag #LetsEatTogether.  MRM live-edited the tweets as they flowed in and chose up to seven tweets to show each time the ad was played. Most of the tweets were addressed to specific people, with friends inviting friends to have a meal together and enjoy each other’s company.

As a result, Coke’s Twitter base in Romania increased 15% and the ad garnered over 1 million social media impressions. Placing live Twitter mentions into a pre-recorded ad presents an incredibly innovative way to combine traditional advertising formats with today’s social media, and proves that you can really invite someone over for a meal through your TV.

Why I’m Curious

While we see tweets show up during the broadcast of live TV shows, This ad not only made people look forward to commercials, but also interact with an ad, and of course, it can’t hurt that it resulted in increased sales. I do wonder how successful this would be in the U.S. when so many people do DVR shows and skip commercials as well as those who opt for services like Netflix rather than have cable.

Red Bull Flow

red-bull-flow

Red Bull has launched “Red Bull Flow“, an app for the BMX and skateboarding community to film and share their tricks.

With Red Bull Flow, users can stitch together seamless films from their shorter videos, showcasing their tricks, without the need for any editing software or prior editing knowledge. After filming their video clips, users add tags to the video specifying the rider, trick and location. Next, the video is published to Flow and may also be shared on Facebook. In Flow, users can discover, watch and share other people’s tricks on their phone or as collaborative videos – ‘Flows’ – on redbullflow.com.

Watch the video for the app here.

Why I’m Curious

What’s interesting about this app, is that YouTube, Instagram video and Vine already exist for video sharing, yet Red Bull has created a unique differentiator in their branded video sharing app. By building an app catering to their BMX and skateboarding audience, Red Bull is essentially creating a new social network for their target to share their tricks, get inspired and essentially learn from each other. In this way, Red Bull is hosting a relevant, long-term branded social experience.

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.

1006323_10151777110032668_595928544_n

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?

Screen Shot 2013-08-16 at 11.17.04 AM

Social Media Reality TV

AT&T has developed a reality series called @SummerBreak. Rather than broadcasting episodes on television, the content is being rolled out entirely on social media channels.

The series follows a group of LA kids spending one last summer together before college. @SummerBreak is slated to run for 8-weeks and so far 44 episodes have aired on YouTube, supplemented by posts on Twitter, Tumblr, Instagram, Vine, and Facebook content published to AT&T’s brand Page.

Why I’m Curious

I think this is a fun, smart way for AT&T to appeal to a younger demographic via social. They’re leaving no social leaf unturned, as all content is made to live in all the places where their target is. And that target apparently is not watching much TV. According to a Neilsen study cited by the WSJ, “12 to 17 year olds spend significantly less time watching TV than their older peers and more time watching videos on phones”.

AT&T has also considered the short attention span of their target, with each video lasting less than 2min.

As far as promoting the effort to their target, AT&T leveraged a teen influencer: They acquired the show’s Twitter account from Caroline Harkleroad, an avid 19 year old social user who has built a series of Twitter handles that are popular with teens. By the time @SummerBreak launched it already had 88,000 followers.

BMW Creates Fake Holiday to Promote Car

BMW turned to China’s microblogging site Sina Weibo to create a holiday called Ctrl-Z day. With the help of influential bloggers, over 300,000 other people told the world what they would “undo” in their lives if there was a Ctrl-Z function in life using #CtrlZDay

From PSFK,

Ctrl-Z Day became viral when Key Opinion Leaders on Weibo started tweeting and promoting the fake holiday. Weibo users believed that the second Friday of July was a ‘worldwide day of regret.’ BMW set the record straight a few days later with a post. The company’s post stated that they wanted people to drive their Z4 without regrets.

Screen Shot 2013-07-25 at 11.57.16 AM

Screen Shot 2013-07-25 at 11.49.33 AM

Why I’m Curious

I thought this was a creative way for BMW to using the language of the technology the contributors are using. There’s a natural fit with Ctrl-Z and regrets, which I don’t’t hink has been used before. However, I think it’s a very familiar idea to the Land Rover ESC key takeover, although different executions.

Heineken #Dropped Departure Roulette on JFK Travelers

As part of Heineken‘s global ‘Voyage’ campaign, the Departure Roulette experiment invited travelers in Terminal 8 at JFK Airport to change their scheduled destinations and board a plane to an unknown place.

Travelers aged 25 or older were given the opportunity to go to an adventurous location by simply pushing a button on a display in the terminal. However, they had to be willing to drop their existing travel plans and immediately board the plane to the unknown. The inspiration for Departure Roulette is ‘Dropped’, a series of episodic adventures that involves Heineken sending four men to remote destinations around the world and filming their experience and the challenges they face along the way.

 

Why I’m Curious

I thought this was an interesting way to take a TV spot and bring it to life in an unusual way. From the video it looks like quite a few people participated, which is interesting because it’s so hard to change flight plans and life plans. Would you drop everything to play Destination Roulette?

New Castle Mocks Bud’s ‘Bowtie’ Can

The latest installment in Newcastle Brown Ale’s snarky, social-media fueled “No Bollocks” campaign is poking fun at traditional beer advertising and its recent focus on the can. And in this case, Budweiser’s much-heralded “bowtie” can is in the cross hairs.

bud_bowtie2

Bud’s limited edition can was introduced in April after three years of development and a significant capital investment. Newcastle, part of Heineken USA, is essentially calling it a can with a couple of dents, like something you’d find on the street.

“Introducing the new, Newcastle Brown Ale bow-tie can,” Newcastle wrote on its Facebook page. “It’s our regular can with the sides pushed in. Innovation! #NoBollocks.”

NewCastle

The image drew thousands of Facebook likes and hundreds of Twitter retweets and favorites. Not to mention, it sat atop Reddit’s Beer board for an extended period of time. However, Newcastle found out that social-media snark cuts both ways. A commenter asked if the can is meant to “hide the fact” that Newcastle uses artificial coloring to get its caramel tint, not toasted barley.

That prompted the brand to get serious. “We will explore the situation as well as potential alternatives for this ingredient,” Newcastle posted in a reply on Facebook, assuring the commenter that the caramel coloring is “well below the California legal standards, which are the toughest in the country.”

Regarding the spoof ad, “we’re an irreverent brand, and we’re poking fun at industry conventions,” Charles van Es, a Heinken USA senior brand director, said in a statement to Ad Age. “In our advertising we also make fun of ourselves all the time. Similar to our neon signs in the on-premise (A $400 sign to sell a $6 beer), our ‘No Bollocks’ approach takes a refreshingly honest look at the world of beer.”

Why Am I Curious?

I like that New Castle is poking fun at innovation that consists entirely of silly packaging and it is neat that it fits well within their larger brand image and campaign. However, if you are going to make a blatant jab at others, you should be ready for attacks as well. To me, it is pretty amazing how one comment from one consumer completely changed the tone of the conversation around New Castle’s campaign as it went from being a social success to a PR crisis where the company had to acknowledge the situation and respond seriously.

Mentos Creates Personalized News For Facebook Users

mentos-fresh-news-app-460-201_460

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.”

Quit Smoking With The Help Of Tweeting Ciggy

TweetingCiggy-1

R/GA is approaching America’s tobacco addiction in a new way by integrating a smoking cessation product with social media to help consumers recognize their smoking habits. @TweetingCiggy posts daily messages about money saved, number of cigarettes smoked, and personal shouts outs to different product users. The agency is hopeful that this Twitter-connected electronic cigarette will catch the smoker’s attention by approaching the matter through their social life.

From PSFK,

“R/GA used an Arduino microcontroller to connect the e-cigarette to the internet. They placed a conducive tape over the button of the e-cigarette and made a cigarette box that contains the Arduino, a Bluetooth shield and a small battery. When the e-cigarette button is pressed, the conducive tape sends a signal to the Arduino which then connects via Bluetooth to an iPhone app.”

Why I’m Curious:

I’m curious to see how affective this campaign will actually be in helping people kick the habit. Using a social tool like Twitter makes it possible to see a definite record of how often a consumer is using their e-cigarette therefore making progress easily traceable – potentially a great idea. A downside although is how this will not help a person trying to quit who caves and smokes a real cigarette. Since these cannot be recorded there will be no digital reinforcement from TweetingCiggy.

Twinkie Makes a Bold Comeback With The Help of Social Media

071513twinkies_dngnk

After we were forced to say goodbye to the iconic Hostess dessert in 2012, the Twinkie has been re-released to the public a little different than before and followed by a lot of buzz on Twitter. The hashtag has become a popular and humorous source of discussion for fans and ultimately anyone that has something to say about the product’s comeback.

From FastCompany,

“The return of the Twinkie, which now has double the shelf life (ew), has folks across the U.S. hugely excited, of course, and #twinkie is trending on Twitter.”

Why I’m Curious:

Hostess is making a tactful move by generating awareness through digital to revive an old-school product. So far they seem to be off to a good start with getting multiple social platform coverage of the Twinkie mascot on The Today Show. I’m curious to see if any further innovative social media action will be taken to increase sales. I think in order for this product to continue to be successful, a strong digital advertising campaign is needed because this is the way today’s generation consumes brand content most effectively.