There are many reasons to love Facebook. I think I’ve just found another.
Here’s what I mean. Check out the Olay website. It’s a thing of beauty, isn’t it? All glamorous black shadowing, glossy red accents, dramatic splash effects and seasonal sparkles.
Now take a look at Olay’s Facebook page, specifically its “Defuzz in Defember” campaign.
Here you have a fresh-faced model wearing a phantom mustache. She’s advertising the company’s charitable campaign for December: buy Olay Smooth Finish Facial Hair Removal Duo, and Olay will donate a dollar to the National Breast Cancer Foundation (and give you a $3 discount, to boot).
To spread the word about defuzzing for a cause, you can add a pink mustache to your Facebook picture. And you know me, I can’t resist any opportunity to advocate for breast cancer research. Check out my cute ’stache here.
A glamour shot it’s not. What it is is a cute, lighthearted way to raise money for a great cause.
A fun stunt like this might not make it into an expensive ad campaign, but on Facebook, a company can be creative and cheeky. It’s the perfect counterpart to an every-pixel-perfect TV spot or print ad.
In other words, with the dual platform of advertising and Facebook pages, a company can have its glamour and its goofiness, too. And since we know women are a complicated target audience, that multi-prong approach can only be a good thing.
What do you think of the Defuzz in Defember campaign? Have you seen any other creative campaigns lately on Facebook or other social networks?
Until I read this article about Harley-Davidson’s latest marketing campaign, I’d never given motorcycles a thought.
I sure have now, and that’s because Harley Davidson’s elaborate website targets women masterfully.
What does the campaign do so well? It understands what women want and treats them with respect, all while remaining true to the Harley-Davidson brand.
In other words, don’t go to the site expecting to see women taking carefree joyrides on hot pink hogs. What you get instead is “My Time to Ride,” a six-episode reality series featuring four diverse and very real women. Each wants to ride for different reasons. One wants to step outside her “girly” comfort zone. Another is recovering from depression. A third is a mother looking for something special to do for herself.
These episodes put the people first, not the product. Yes, the videos touch on services like H-D’s New Rider class and its mentoring program, but they put more focus on the characters’ moving stories. We see the four women conquering fears and feeling a new sense of power and independence as they learn how to master their 500-pound bikes.
As the Wall Street Journal points out, this campaign to win over women (not to mention similar Harley-Davidson campaigns targeting Latinos and African-Americans) is a necessity of survival. Hard hit by the recession, the company has to expand its reach beyond its traditional demographic of white, male baby boomers. And since women already make 60 percent of car purchases, they’re a sensible target for the motorcycle industry.
Some companies, faced with the same challenge, might think it would suffice to make a smaller, pinker version of their men’s product. Instead, Harley-Davidson dug deeper and produced something more thoughtful. The campaign shows that biking can be a cathartic experience, a community builder, and a show of strength.
With its subtlety and skill, I think this is a great example of marketing a traditionally male product to women. I’ll be watching to see how the campaign affects sales figures.
What do you think of the campaign? Does it make you look at motorcycling in a new light?
Do you know what I love best about Target’s 2 Day Sale commercials? The pearls and heels accessorized with the take no prisoners attitude.
The laugh-out-loud spots feature the “crazy Target lady” training for the rigors of Black Friday. She sprints through Target aisles in a track suit. She lubes up with “elf grease” and hydrates with eggnog. She maps out her route through the store like a football coach drawing plays on a chalkboard. And yes, she eventually becomes completely unhinged, comparing Christmas shopping to war and staying awake for days to craft a gingerbread Target store and snip up her own glitter with teeny-tiny scissors.
Through it all, she is never without her spike-heeled pumps, enormous pearl necklace, and demure blond ponytail.
The campaign is a hilarious poke at those of us obsessed with holiday deal-shopping. But it also shows that Black Friday is a fascinating female phenomenon. One moment, we’re setting beautiful tables, filling our loved ones’ bellies with abundant goodies, and expressing gratitude for all of life’s gifts. Scant hours later, we turn into gladiators, elbowing fellow shoppers out of the way to snag that last LaLaLoopsy doll.
Black Friday is increasingly getting more aggressive. Instead of early bird specials at 5 a.m. on Friday, marketers are now opening their doors and deals at 9 p.m., before we’ve even fully digested our feast. Our tryptophan is trumped by the adrenaline of bargain hunting.
Traditionally, marketing to women avoids aggressive images, war metaphors, the idea of winning (as we women, are more about saving the world than conquering it). But on this one Black Friday, the rules change. The spoils go to the victor, and evidently to those who get to Best Buy first, HDTV’s for just $79.99.
What do you think of this once-a-year shift in marketing to women? Will it inspire you to storm the shops at 9 p.m. this Thanksgiving?
To be completely honest, my initial reaction to the Google Plus unveiling was less than enthusiastic. Sigh, yet another platform to tell the world I am “at Starbucks, getting a latte.” (I try to convince myself on a daily basis that this is relevant information). Trust me, I’m not complaining. I like having options. But keeping up with the social media rat race can be a little exhausting, regardless of how heavily it impacts our daily lives (or for some of us, our jobs).
Facebook, Twitter and the like are a huge part of what I do Brogan & Partners. I have seen up close and personal how social media can single handedly build a brand, generate buzz and make or break the success of a business. So this forces the question…will Google Plus become as natural as breathing like updating a status on Facebook?
Let’s take a look at the stats. Thus far, Google Plus has about 40 million users, a drop in the bucket compared to its Facebook counterpart of 800 million. This also means that due to Plus’s lack of maturity, it is too soon to say for sure how effective the network will be for marketing and building brands. In terms of cosmetics, both formats appear to be pretty similar at first glance, even though Facebook will be introducing Timeline, their new “Face lift”, in the near future (stay tuned for more on that).
All uncertainties aside, however, Google Plus might have its advantages. Unlike Facebook, Plus users will have the capability to link directly to YouTube while sharing videos without having to shorten URL’s or be shackled by character limits. It will also have the benefit of donning the name “Google” and, of course, in the ultimate form of nepotism, Google Plus brand pages will be promoted to the top of the search engine powerhouses’ results.
Another benefit to using Google Plus is its current lack of saturation. You may have heard whispers when the new social network debuted that you needed an invitation to join (a great PR ruse used by Facebook when it appeared on the scene, too). It is now open to all users, but because you can customize the circles you share with and vice versa, you won’t get the same mess of information on your home page that you certainly get on Facebook. For now.
Only time will tell how big this social giant will grow. I, of course, jumped on the band wagon and signed Brogan up for a Plus profile. Want to know how to get your brand started on Google Plus?
- Sign in with your Google account, then go the Google Plus Business Page and click “Create your Google + Page.”
- Choose what category your brand falls under (most likely, it will be “Product or Brand”, or if you are unsure you can pick “Company, Institution or Organization)
- Now, enter your page name (your brand name) and your website.
- This next step is where you need to get a little creative. You have to describe your brand/company in 10 words or less. Try to stick to a description that includes buzz words about your business’s core competencies or where you fit in the marketplace. Here are a few things to think about: What makes you unique? What do you really do? If someone is on a search engine, what words would help them find you the fastest?
- Tell your circles. If you are new to Google Plus, then you most likely do not have circles to tell of your new presence. So you can skip this step. If you are a Google Plus vet, then you can share your page with your current Plus contacts.
- Congrats! You have a Google Plus page. Start looking up other brands and add them to your circles, post pictures and beef up the information to your profile page. The more info on your page and posts about your brand, the better.
Created a page already? I gave you my thoughts on Plus...I’d love to hear yours.
Like a lot of women, I used to keep my admiration for Bethenny Frankel to myself. This was back when she was catfighting her way through The Real Housewives of New York City on Bravo. I couldn’t help but be drawn to her smarts, her quips, and the fact that she actually seemed relatable.
Frankel’s moved on to her own show, Bethenny Ever After, and bigger and better things. She’s used her celebrity status and her keen understanding of what women want to establish her own brand which now includes bestselling self-help books, a shapewear line, skincare products, and exercise videos.
But her most brilliant endeavor is her cornerstone product, the Skinnygirl Margarita. Frankel understands that women want to have a good time and still stay skinny. She found a niche in a category typically dominated by men. Smart, considering women make up 65-70% of the alcohol purchasing decisions.
And it seems to be working well. With nearly 350,000 Facebook fans and over 33,000 Twitter followers, Skinny Girl cocktails are the hottest new drink. Clearly Fortune Brand’s Beam Global understands that too since they recently signed a nine-figure deal with Bethenny and they’ve since released a Skinnygirl Sangria and Skinnygirl White Cranberry Cosmo.
“If I’m going to form a brand, it has to solve a problem for women,” Frankel said recently on Forbes.com. “It has to be something I would actually do, say, eat, drink, live. And it has to be innovative, something that hasn’t been done before.”
Forget Bethenny’s brash personality, her fame, her hotness, and the fact that she regularly says, “Holy s#%&balls” on TV. As a businesswoman who took female consumers seriously and filled a niche that nobody else had thought to consider, I think Bethenny Frankel is a class act.
Can you think of any other traditionally male industries that should take heed and start producing for women?
Social media is changing the world and it’s proving itself time and again that its powers can be used for more good than evil. Exhibit A: the Bread Art Project. It’s a really simple concept with hugely impactful results. With the help of Facebook, Twitter and the like, this project has gone from an unknown to a social media sensation.
The Grain Foods Foundation along with Food Network favorite Ted Allen (host of Chopped) are joining forces with Feeding America to provide a whopping one million pounds of food for those who need it the most. And the numbers are staggering. Hunger impacts 48 million Americans, 17 million of which are children. Most of us can’t imagine what it would be like to not be able to feed ourselves or our families.
And now, social media is being used to help feed the hungry, simply by making pieces of digital bread art. Never fancied yourself an artist? All you have to do is upload a picture of yourself, friends, pets, or any image that is important to you. If you’re a regular Picasso, you can even create your own design and the application will generate a personalized piece of bread art just for you. For every slice of bread art, the Grain Food Foundation will donate a $1 to Feeding America. They have already raised over $21,000 for the project and it continues to grow. Bet you never thought a digital piece of bread could be so much fun or could give back to such a great cause. What are some of your favorite causes social media has impacted?
I even tried out my art skills with a picture of me and some of my girls from Brogan & Partners. If I ever wondered what my face would look like toasted to a piece of bread…I just got my answer.
Yes, it has finally happened. People are putting QR codes on tombstones. For those of us (50+ like me) who are still learning the many possibilities offered by using QR codes, it’s amazing to see them “engraved in stone”… on a tombstone. Upon reflection, this offers a way for folks to connect with others in a meaningful and deep way, the very essence of the power of social media.
I read this article on Mashable QR Code on Tombstone Creates Dynamic Memorial. It tells the story of an Israel-based technology executive who could not decide what to write on his mother’s tombstone. He deliberated with his family and they settled on using the technology of a QR code to connect people to a dynamic and evolving tribute website that memorializes his mother’s life.
Many of the comments on this story brought up concerns about whether this sort of technology will withstand the test of time. Will people even be able to access this information in 20 years, much less in 200 years? I have to believe that questions like this, while interesting, are not fundamentally necessary in making communication decisions. A serious artist will of course consider the longevity of his or her materials when creating art that is supposed to last (rule number one: don’t paint your masterpiece with washable markers on toilet paper). But that same artist (or writer) should not worry if their message will be understood in future generations. We know that if a message is important, future generations will appreciate it. After thousands and thousands of years, we still study and appreciate hieroglyphics and cave paintings.
The concept I take from this story is that social media is providing new ways for us to communicate. Use the technology and trust that if your message is important, it will be read, now and in the future.
The holy grail of marketing is going viral. But to go viral are companies willing to sell their souls, common sense and sell off the audience that could most likely make them money? It seems that is Spirit Airline’s marketing strategy. And it sounds like a weiner of an idea to me. A co-worker of mine recently got their “Want to see our weiner?” eblast campaign. She was shocked and offended. So was I. Capitalizing on “Weinergate” it looks like Spirit was trying to nab some keyword searches and capitalize on this recent Capitol Hill sex scandal.
But what I found more scandalous was that Spirit has a long marketing history of being sexist, sophomoric, insensitive and inappropriate with a M.I.L.F campaign and Gulf Oil Spill campaign (their humorous twist of turning an environmental tragedy into suntan oil on a woman’s well-endowed breasts.) And even funnier to me, is that Spirit would overlook the fact that 70% of travel decisions are made by women according to a travel article highlighting Mary Beth Bond, a leading travel expert. Looking for online outrage or at the very least backlash, I was also surprised that Spirit Airlines is barely on Facebook (are they afraid of a real conversation with consumers?) But I did find a Boycott Spirit Airlines fan page. So I guess if frat boys and male bloggers are your target audience, they are on target. I just don’t understand how that will fill seats on an airplane? So as an advertising creative director, I am confused. As a woman, I am offended. And as a consumer, I’m not buying Spirit.
During the era of poodle skirts and pedal pushers, Harry J. Hoenselaar began a tradition that that would be loved by generations. He opened his first HoneyBaked Ham store in Michigan. With the finest-quality ham and mouthwatering sweet glaze, Harry invented Ham, as we know it--through his novel invention of the spiral-slicing machine. For 50 years, the world has loved the tradition of HoneyBaked. So to keep the brand fresh for the next 50 years, we used non-traditional media.
When taking a traditional brand into non-traditional media, it is important to carry through with the emotion of the brand. For HoneyBaked it is the nostalgic memories that takes you back to your first HoneyBaked holiday and makes you want to pass the tradition on to the next generation. People love sharing HoneyBaked with those they love; so social media is a natural environment for HoneyBaked marketing. Through social media, mobile media, mobile advertising and online streaming, HoneyBaked has been able to reach out to their fans more than ever. As a result of marketing efforts of five divisions, HoneyBaked attained nearly 10,000 fans in the first 5 months of launching their national Facebook page.
What are some ways you have discovered traditional brands in non-traditional media?
With Easter, this weekend, you may consider being a fan yourself at facebook.com/HoneyBaked.
Is NFO the new SEO? According to Facebook, only 0.02% of news stories actually make it to someone’s News Feed. So, how can you get noticed when the social networks are constantly evolving? Optimize. Optimize. Optimize.
Facebook has done something Google has never done; they provided a mathematic formula behind News Feed Optimization, or NFO, which has become the equivalent of Search Engine Optimization. Based on this “Edge Rank” formula, a posts likelihood of appearing in a news feed is a function of these three elements: Affinity, Weight, and Time.
- Affinity is a measure of how often someone interacts with your posts on a regular basis. The more you interact with the same person’s posts, the more likely their posts will show up on your News Feed.
- Weight is the score assigned to each post and how much activity the post gets. The more comments and “likes” your post receives, the higher the weight will be.
- Time is the final factor of the Edge Rank formula. It’s the length of how long ago the interaction was created. The more recent the post, the higher it ranks.
Facebook also weighs the content of your post in a specific order.
- Uploading videos. Whether it’s through YouTube or your own video, it holds the top ranking and has the highest chance of getting seen in a person’s News Feed.
- Checking in. Using Facebook Places (which is similar to foursquare), you can “check in” at certain locations, and tag the friends that are with you. Just like foursquare, this is most commonly done through the mobile application, but more people will see your check in on Facebook than on foursquare.
- Uploading pictures. Tagging friends in the photos you upload tends to attract a lot of interaction, boosting the weight of the post even more.
- Sharing posts. When you see a friend’s post that you like, you can share it to post on your own profile. But make sure when you do this, you add your own comments to make it original.
- Posting links. Share a link from a website that interests you, or that interests your friends/fans, and add your own unique take on the topic.
- Updating status. It is more likely this could be lost in the clutter, but there is a chance your status could still have a heavy weight if it gains a lot of comments and “likes” as mentioned earlier.
With the rapid changes taking place in social media, marketers have to stay on our toes, and hopefully with these tips, you can rule the Facebook News Feed and stand out from the crowd. How do you plan on boosting your profile popularity?