Social media: there is no one as blind as those who don’t want to see

Social Media

There is something so amazing about those brands that completely dismissed the traditional advertising strategy that they had been developing for years, and committed to leading the market by first answering the question: where is my audience now?

When they asked the first time, the response came quickly: “On social media networks.” And what ‘social media’ meant was basically Facebook and Twitter.

But now, when they ask the same question, everything is different.

The digital and social environment is evolving at a dizzying pace. The user has access to a massive amount of social platforms, on which to generate, share, and enjoy content. The work of brands is now limited to deciphering the key factors that make up the essence of these new networks: functionality, heavy usage, and the ways in which other brands have tapped into their full potential.

This purpose of this post is therefore to provide a simplified analysis, and should serve as a sort of introduction into the subject, in order to get the reader to delve deeper into the matter.

Snapchat

What is it?

A mobile application.

What is it for?

To generate content (photos and videos) that disappear within a short period of time. These photos and videos (which can only last a maximum of 10 seconds) can be shared in a “story” (for a maximum of 24 hours) on the user’s profile, and can also be sent individually to one’s followers.

What is the extent of its reach?

Since its release, it has accumulated a total of 100 million users worldwide, however in Spain, the figure is relatively low, as it does not reach up to half a million users. Nevertheless, these users are generally comprised of adolescents and ‘millennials’.

How can brands take advantage?

Before deciding whether or not your brand should be on this platform, you have to assess certain aspects of the brand, and ask yourself some questions, such as: Do I have any products or services aimed at a younger audience? Is my brand fresh and fun, or do I just want it to be perceived as such? Do I believe in creativity? If your responses are “yes, yes, and YES”, Snapchat is for you. There are many brands like MTV (who got over 12 million content views on Snapchat during the VMAs), Red Bull, Taco Bell, etc. that already co-exist with, and share editorial content with their community. The manner in which content is shared on Snapchat differs from the way it is done on other networks, therefore, it is very important to know and understand the finer details of Snapchat. In this way, brands are better equipped to make the most of the platform – taking advantage of the ‘temporariness’ feature, to enable the sort of creativity that inspires the launch of the following types of strategies:

1. Promotions: For example, the case of the frozen yoghurt brand ’16 HANDLES.’ Users were to share a snap of themselves tasting a 16 Handles product, and they would then receive product coupons; these, once opened, were available only for the 10 seconds that snaps last.

2. Branded creative content: one significant example is the last Sprite campaign launched on Snapchat, which got them, in just a few days, more than 2 million views.

3. Exclusive content: HBO, to promote the third season of its hit series “Girls,” shared ‘snaps’ of all the fun that the show’s actors where having on the red carpet – a strategy that their fans loved so much.

4. Collaborations with influencers: if they have YouTube, Twitter or Instagram … how could they not have Snapchat? Evan Garber, a Snapchat artist and major influencer, is one such person that is already being ‘used’ by huge brands like Red Bull and Snickers:

And what about Spaniards? Rush Smith, Dulceida, Juanmasaurus and many more (Article in Spanish) are already on this network, spreading and sharing their craze and silliness with thousands of followers, within which there could be fans of your brand.

Periscope

What is it?

It is a smartphone application that belongs to Twitter.

What is it for?

To broadcast and share live-streamed videos, from anywhere in the world. In the words of its creators, “a live video can transport us to another place and show us what is happening there.” One detail that it shares in common with Snapchat is that the content only remains on the application platform for 24 hours, after which it is deleted.

What is the extent of its reach?

The platform already accounts for more than 10 million users, a figure that it accumulated since its launch on Android.

How can brands take advantage?

From the start, brands used Periscope to show events from a different point of view. The ATRESMEDIA group has taken advantage of the benefits of this platform to connect with younger audiences. It was used for the first t§ime in their news (Article in Spanish) during their last Neox Fan Awards gala (Article in Spanish), and on a famous program called “Zapeando.”

Although there are other audiovisual platforms where brands are also developing engagement strategies with their fans, using Periscope to show another side of the brand is clearly a very clever idea. This is evident in the case of the fashion brand DKNY, who made the decision to use their profile to present virtual tours of their offices, thereby also showing their audience the people who work for the brand. Certainly, no one can deny that Perisope is a social network that is often exploited for advertising purposes; however, the creative possibilities that it presents are immense, for example, when attempting to develop a personal brand. Hundreds of people use Periscope to show off their expertise through tutorials, exhibitions and other content related to their professional sectors. Chalene Johnson, Kimra Luna, Kim Garst and Marty Coleman are examples of Periscope users with millions of followers, who have taken advantage of all the potential that this new and unconventional environment offers.

Whatsapp

What is it?

A smartphone application.

What is it for?

It is an instant messaging service, which also includes multimedia features.

What is the extent of its reach?

Globally, this platform is nearing the incredible figure of one billion users. In Spain, there are already 15 million users that benefit from its services, therefore placing the country in the top 5 worldwide.

How can brands take advantage?

WhatsApp is not a platform for advertising to fans. In fact, its developers assure users that they will not introduce advertising, and moreover, will not charge them regularly to use the app, besides a small annual fee. However, that does not mean that brands have not found a way to take advantage of one of most downloaded social platforms in history:

1. Ligate un Aygo (transl. Win yourself an Aygo): A campaign in which Toyota, in an attempt to win over younger audiences, following the launch of the Toyota Aygo, created a scheme where they allowed the audience to try to win over the new car by ‘wooing’ it through Whatsapp messages. The results exceeded the objectives: more than 16,000 participants, an increase of the Share of Voice of the Toyota AYGO from 5.9% to 36%, and more than 9,000 multimedia files sent by the participants within almost 90,000 WhatsApp messages.

2. Whatscook de Hellmann’s: a campaign in which the famous brand chatted with their fans and gave them culinary tips through meal recipes cooked in real-time. With an investment of just $1000, the brand received 4 million impressions and interacted with a total of 8000 users (with an average of 65 minutes per interaction with each of them).

3. Overall: taxis, clubs, restaurants, etc. Different professions maintain a close relationship with their clients through this platform. Not particularly on a creative level, but on a functional level, reaping the benefits of this social network.

Shazam

What is it?

A smartphone application.

What is it for?

In the beginning, the platform was used for identifying music (and is still being used for that today), however, since brands began to incorporate it into their advertising strategies, it is also considered a great ally for multiplatform campaigns.

What is the extent of its reach?

In Spain, the platform accounts for more than 5.5 million active users per month.

How can brands take advantage?

In most cases, Shazam has produced very good results when the aim of the campaign involved redirecting a brand’s TV spot to the digital environment. User behavior today involves scenarios where their support is gained at two different levels, i.e. while consuming content (either on the television, at the cinema, on radio, internet, etc.) they also have their mobile phones in their hands.

Ideas built on taking advantage of this behavior were already put into practice long ago by AXA and Wilkinson, with very good results: thousands of interactions were received from audiences who were redirected from the brand’s traditional spot to their digital content. And if you already have a TV spot, any other supporting platform that is adopted to engage the user will help him to have a more fulfilling experience.

The strategy chosen to do this however, is another matter.

Do you remember how this post began?

The beginning of the text touched on the courage of certain brands to innovate on these new (or not so new) social platforms in order to “exist” in these digital environments that their audiences frequent. Do you really agree with this? Are we overestimating these strategies? Well, here’s your answer: The new platforms have (almost) everything: a massive audience, high creative content, requirement of investment much lower than the traditional sector, and thousands or millions of impressions.

There you have it.

Menu