Brands are finding it increasingly difficult to connect with their audiences across social media. Although essential within any strategy, editorial plans and paid media campaigns are no longer enough to establish real relationships with users. We must offer them something different, something exciting, hence for our campaign developed for Comex in December 2020, we came out on top thanks to the magic combination of data and creativity.
With over 4,000 stores across the country, Comex is the largest paint retailer in Mexico. Virtually all Mexicans associate the sale of paint with Comex.
By the end of 2020, it was time the brand worked to increase its visibility across social networks. It already had great brand recognition – not only does it dominate its market, but also has the third highest sales volume in the country – and as such, was looking for something distinctive that would allow it to dominate conversations on socials and increase share of voice.
To achieve this goal, we devised an innovative plan combining three ingredients: the original Comex colour catalog, data analytics and a retrospective look at 2020, a year full of emotions and feelings. We give you, #MyWordsHaveColour.
We took advantage of an unconventional colour catalog
Most professional colour palettes fall into large families, and then assign a code to each particular hue. Comex has a catalog of around 2,000 colours but, unlike other brands, each colour is identified with one or more words instead of a number.
Looking at the Comex colour chart, we found all kinds of expressions like “Afternoon in Paris”, “English Earthenware” or “Andromeda”. Also words like “Sparkle”, “Gentle”, “Hospitality” or “Sweetness”. Alongside more conventional ones, like “Achievement”, “Free”, “Ingenuity” or “Dancing”.
In any case, expressions that anyone could use in their day to day. It is difficult to form sentences with the likes of “lilac” or “greenish blue”, but “confidence”, “sympathy” or “science”, on the other hand are frequently used in conversation and across social media.
From this, an idea emerged: why not analyse the tweets written throughout the year, to match the Comex colours with what the users had published? This way we could know which colours they had mentioned most frequently, logically, without them being aware that they were talking about colours, since the Comex colour classification is a part of everyday speech.
This is how the #MyWordsHaveColour proposal was born. Any user who published a tweet including that hashtag and mentioning the official Comex account, would receive a personalized palette made from the colour mentions in all the tweets published during 2020. Each word would have its corresponding colour as a background in the Comex catalog , and the size of each square would be proportional to the number of times it was used.
Data analytics as a driver of creativity
So far everything is clear (on paper) but we couldn’t have developed this idea without great technological development behind it. We programmed a bot using code written in R, we used a Twitter Developer account to access the data, and we remotely set up a machine on Microsoft Azure’s Data Science Virtual Machine.
The script was programmed to search for new mentions of the #MyWordsHaveColour hashtag every minute. When it found them, it would analyze all the tweets posted to the author’s account during 2020, match the words with the colours from the Comex catalog, and create the custom palette. Lastly, it would publish the palette to the user’s verified account.
The proposal became a viral hit from the get-go. Our intention was to test the bot’s operation discreetly. So we posted a test tweet late at night, trying not to attract attention. However, it was quickly discovered and massively retweeted. In just 3 hours, the hashtag became a Trending Topic in Mexico, and stayed in the top 3 throughout the next day.
The success was so great that our bot accumulated a long waiting list. Although each scan took around 17 seconds to complete, the very high number of requests brought the waiting time to four hours.
Ultimately, the activation was a success. About 10,000 users requested their personalized palette. More than 22,000 tweets were published that included the hashtag #MyWordsHaveColour, generating more than 31 million impressions. We certainly met the goal of dominating the conversation, as 62% of mentions in its category during the month of December included Comex. And everything was achieved organically, without investing a single penny in promotion.
With this project we were able to establish an emotional connection with the users. After a difficult year for all, marked by isolation and losses, we launched a message with a positive undertone, without referring to the context. Users were delighted to see the analysis of their own expressions captured in a colour chart. And at the same time, we achieved the goal of publicizing the Comex catalog and reinforcing brand recognition.