Portfolio of three successful social media campaigns
Portfolio of Three Successful
Social Media Campaigns
EDED20447: Media Relations in Arts Administration
Assignment 3 Term One 2013
Robert Puffett S0228769
Social Media as defined in Wikipedia, “Social media
are media used for social interaction, using highly
accessible and scalable publishing techniques.
Social media use web based technologies to create
highly interactive platforms through which
individuals and communities share, co-create,
discuss, and modify user-generated content.”
Differences to Traditional Media:
Print, Radio & Television
• Social media differs from traditional media in that
it has a wider range of quality, an almost
worldwide reach, a greater frequency through
many channels and all of the time. It has a
usability that isn‘t restricted to those with
specialist knowledge, but is open to all with a
general understanding of computers and the
internet. It is also immediate for all to see and
permanent, it’s broadcast is not usually
• Social media has introduced, “substantial and
pervasive changes to communication between
organisations, communities and individuals”.
Why use Social Media?
• No longer a One way street
• All the same (more or less)
• Tired and jaded
Why use social media? Shama Kabani in her book, ‘The Zen of Social Media
Marketing’, has highlighted three reasons why traditional or offline marketing no
longer works as well as it has in the past.
1. Marketing was a one way street, and it worked well for years because consumers
couldn’t talk back. Word of mouth took a long time. We believed the lady in the ad.
Today though we can talk back, it is now a two way street, and we do talk back on
social media platforms.
2. We were more homogenous in years gone by, we wore the same clothes, had the
same habits and enjoyed the same activities. Marketers knew their demographics,
man is his forties, married with two kids, breadwinner and so on. Today we
celebrate and encourage individualism and are not so easily stereotyped and this
means you can’t reach a demographic through one channel, you have to reach
them through the channel of their choice and increasingly that is through social
3. Today consumers are a lot more cynical, before we used to believe that that product
could eliminate the most stubborn of stains, or it tastes just like how grandma used
to make it. Today we no longer trust the corporate message, we want information
from people we know and trust, or at least people without a vested interest, so we
‘google’ reviews, engage in commentary and demand trial versions.
Though traditional marketing is in decline, it is not over, it has evolved to incorporate
social media marketing, for example print ads may refer to a Facebook page, or any
other form of social media.
25 Characteristics of Highly Effective
Social Media Campaigns
1. They spread like wildfire – if it is not spreading it is not effective
2. They are not spammy – share something insightful not just site links
3. They provide value – a good campaign offers both physical and mental value to people
4. They are well branded – a brands logo should be consistent across all media and highly visible
5. They are measured – use analytical tools to measure effectiveness
6. They have excellent copy – no jargon or marketing speak, be a real human speaking to other
7. They don’t sell – sales are usually indirect and later on
8. They build relationships – engage, don’t broadcast, to build loyalty
9. They build trust – honesty is the best policy and is hard to get back if lost
10. They are innovative – be different to get noticed, this can lead to action at a later date
11. They have ears – listen to feedback and embrace and engage with it whether it is good or bad
12. They are well organised – campaigns must have a step by step plan
13. They are maintained by humans – Automation of social media activities destroys trust, no one
wants to talk to a robot
14. They are consistent - whether it is updates or replies be reliable in your schedule
15. They have bait – freebies, discounts, samples turn people into customers
16. They use leverage – they make the most of their existing customers and the company’s
17. They include a blog – this is the basis of a social media campaign and should be easy to share
18. They engage other blogs – spread your message throughout your community
19. They are not everywhere – don’t be on every social media site just for the sake of it
20. They have humour – it says you are friendly and is memorable
21. They share company events – be transparent, no one likes secretive organisations
22. They integrate offline marketing – social media is just one part of the marketing mix
23. They use the right networks – Twitter is not for video, YouTube is not for short messages
24. They use photos and videos – We live in a visual age and your campaign should embrace it
25. They have a call to action – Get them to sign up, in or on!
Three of the best
• Melbourne Metro
Melbourne Metro: Social Media Campaign
“Dumb Ways to Die” YouTube Video
• Dumb Ways to Die is part of a public service announcement (PSA) campaign called
‘Be Safe Around Trains’ by Metro Trains in Melbourne to promote rail safety. The
campaign was devised by advertising agency McCann Melbourne. It has appeared
in newspapers, on local radio, in outdoor advertising, throughout the Metro Trains
network and online.
• Online included a YouTube animated video as well as a karaoke version, GIF’s on
Tumblr a photo sharing site, an interactive website - dumbwaystodie.com, and a
Facebook page. The song is also downloadable from Soundcloud and iTunes. There
is also an iPod and iPad game available on iTunes.
• The YouTube video was uploaded on 14th November, 2012 and with it’s cute
animation and catchy song quickly went viral. It is a black comedy featuring cute
animated ‘jelly-bean’ characters who kill themselves in various ways, including
three ways around trains.
• According to Wikipedia, “It was viewed 2.7 million times within 48 hours and 4.7
million times within 72 hours. Within two weeks the video had been viewed 28
million times and spawned 85 parodies.” Currently it has been viewed over 46
• The interactive website
dumbwaystodie.com has 9 scenarios
based around trains, with a dumb and a
smart alternative to educate the visitor on
safety around trains.
• There is also an opportunity, by pressing a
red button, to pledge, “I solemnly swear
to not do dumb stuff around trains”.
• The song cracked the top ten
downloads in the singer/songwriter
category on iTunes and reached the
6th most popular song globally at one
• According to John Mescall, Executive
Creative Director of McCann
Melbourne, “The aim of this
campaign is to engage an audience
that really doesn’t want to hear any
kind of safety message”.
• McCann Melbourne has estimated that within two weeks of the
campaigns commencement it had generated at least $50 million worth of
global video value, as well as more than 700 media stories for, “a fraction
of the cost of one TV ad”.
• As John Mescall said in ‘The Age’ newspaper on November 29, 2012, “A lot
of paid advertising campaigns die the moment you stop spending money,
whereas this is going to be in people's playlists for quite a while now,” he
also added that TV networks had to re-think their controlled approach.
• He goes on to say, ““The old model of broadcasting and creating fixed
content that people will just sit and watch at your behest is dead ... The
things that we were promised from the internet 5 to 10 years ago [around
democratising content] I think are now finally starting to come true.”
• He further notes that, "We took a serious safety message and we snuck up
on people with it, we didn't hit them over the head ... it's dark humour
delivered with joy, which almost always works but there's not enough of it
• As Vivienne Egan notes in her online article, “Dumb ways to die, smart ways to do
• It is a ridiculously catchy song with it’s very current cute, indie sound.
• It’s not personal, the jelly bean people have no gender, race, socio-economic status, so
it doesn’t discriminate.
• It’s not location specific but rather accessible world-wide. Grizzly Bears, Rattlesnakes
and Moose are not native to Melbourne.
• It goes against the norm, instead of being a dark or horrific look at the consequences
of accidents around trains, the message is elegantly and subtly woven in to the catchy
song and colourful animation. Teenagers, the target audience, are not being
emotionally manipulated or preached to.
• It has great positioning by labelling train accidents as dumb instead of tragic, it
stimulates behaviour change using peer-pressure and shame (of being thought of as
dumb) to induce people to change their habits.
• Though it is hard to quantify the success of a change in behaviour, the 46 million +
views and numerous downloads suggest it has been. Metro trains has said it has
resulted in a 30% reduction in “near-miss” accidents.
• When evaluated against Boame’s ‘25 characteristics of highly effective social media campaigns’, it
ticks most of the boxes.
• Having reached 28 million views on YouTube within 2 weeks it spread like wildfire.
• While not spammy, it couldn’t be said it was insightful either, but it’s lack of insight was in keeping
with the overall style and tone of the campaign.
• It provided mental value due to the very interesting delivery of the message.
• It has excellent copy due to the refreshing delivery of the serious message in a whimsical and joyful
• It built relationships with its target audience of teenagers by not preaching or emotionally
manipulating as with other similar campaigns.
• The campaign was innovative for it’s juxtaposition of cute animation and catchy song against a very
• The campaigns ears, it’s Facebook page, does display a simple engagement in many ways, with the
administrator asking questions like, “How much do you like Dumb Ways to Die???” and only
offering links to the YouTube video and to the downloads available on Soundcloud and iTunes. A
deeper engagement is probably not warranted due to the whimsical nature of the campaign. It
should be noted there was no link to the interactive website on its Facebook page.
• The only noticeable bait besides liking, Google + or sharing, were the links to watch the video or
download the song.
• The humour, though dark, was evident and contributed greatly to the success of the campaign.
• It integrated with offline marketing channels of newspaper, radio, outdoor advertising and
advertising throughout the Metro train network.
• It was a visual campaign that was spearheaded by the cutely animated YouTube video, as well as
the screenshot GIF’s on Tumblr and screenshots on the Facebook page.
• The only noticeable call to action was the YouTube, Soundcloud and iTunes links, but as this was an
awareness campaign, a strong call to action wasn’t needed.
Heinz Five Beanz: Social Media Campaign
“Beanz For Grown Upz” Facebook Page
• Campaign aim was to promote one of Heinz less
recognised and less market dominating products, Beans,
and particularly a new five bean variety.
• Using humour it acquired and engaged fans (known as
beaniez) on a new ‘Heinz Beanz’ Facebook Page.
• Targeting adult consumers with a sophisticated palette it
quizzed fans with a “My Grown Up Beanz” quiz about
their personality traits, which told fans which of the five
types of beans they had grown up to be most like.
• As ‘We Are Social’, the agency responsible for the
campaign said in its blog in August 2012, “Using the
messaging Beanz For Grown Upz we created a campaign
that played on the idea that as you grow older you and
your friends all grow up slightly differently. But however
different your tastes and interests become, your friends
are still the same ‘old beans’ you know and love. This
analogy applies to Heinz FIVE Beanz – they maybe all be
slightly different but you’ll still love them as much as the
traditional Heinz Beans you grew up with”.
• There is also a Battleship style app on the Facebook Page
• The campaign ran for two weeks and 5 winners were selected every hour.
The winners received their very own ‘personalised’ bean with their name
engraved on it.
• Fans were encouraged to invite 10 of their friends to play, to win a free
goodie bag, which gave a significant viral boost to the campaign.
• Facebook fans also had the opportunity to try the product with a coupon
• As said on the eGorilla website on February 7th, 2013, “Heinz focused their
efforts and resources on entertaining their fans, rather than directly
advertising the new product. The campaign was highly engaging, yet was
not time consuming for the users. Because the idea was original and was
customer focused (the personalised beans), it led to massive media
coverage. Most importantly, they invested in building up their community,
which has proven to be the most powerful marketing approach of the past
• As Tom Ollerton of ‘We Are Social’ said in an econsultancy.com article
from October 2012, “…fans use the page for fun and entertainment, so the
brand responds to that with light hearted content such as games and
• The campaign resulted in 22k quiz participants.
• 30k new Facebook fans.
• 10k sharing the App.
• Through Facebook networks it reached 10.8 million people, as well as 3 million outside of
Facebook on Twitter, blogs and news sites.
• When evaluated against Boame’s ‘25 characteristics of highly effective social media
campaigns’, it too ticks most of the boxes.
• Unlike ‘Dumb Ways to Die’ it didn’t spread like wildfire, but like ‘Dumb Ways to Die’ it wasn’t
spammy, but also not insightful, which it oviously wasn’t intended to be.
• The campaign offered physical value in prizes of a personalised bean, as well as a goodie bag
and a coupon for a free sample.
• The Facebook page is well branded, with the highly recognisable and iconic Heinz logo
prominently displayed throughout the Facebook Page.
• It has excellent copy as it is fun, light-hearted and entertaining, for example a picture of
beans on toast is titled, ‘Sunday roast or beans on toast?’
• It is engaging with it’s fun and games, prizes, freebies and excellent copy, especially the
replies from Heinz.
• Assigning personality traits to beans and matching them to fans, that is truly innovative!
• Heinz listens to feedback and takes on board the good with the bad with good grace.
• Content and replies are consistent, with postings every 1-2 days and prompt replies usually
within the hour to fan comments.
• Lots of bait in the way of prizes and samples .
• They have leveraged a well loved and iconic brand to engage and increase their Facebook fan
• There is a balanced mix of cartoon bean characters, professional product shots and delicious
meal shots that take advantage of the visual nature of Facebook.
• Calls to action include quizzes, surveys and offers to entice friends, light-hearted questions as
well as prizes, samples and giveaways. All done without excess.
Cadbury: Social Media Campaign
“Thanks a Million” Facebook Page
• The aim of the campaign was to up the
engagement rates of their fans on their
Facebook Page through a higher
percentage of fans newsfeeds having
their content, as only 16% of fans ever
saw content released by Cadbury.
• The campaign was to engineer a giant
chocolate hand giving the iconic
Facebook ‘thumbs up’ as a thank you to
their 1 million + Facebook fans.
• Done by a real time video feed of the
construction process in a studio
decorated with user-generated content
and photos. The team also responded to
user requests and comments on
Facebook, during the video stream.
• It used teaser ads on Facebook in the
build up to the event which included a
• It also invited fans to compete for the
chance to place the final piece of
• As Jonathan Houston notes in memeburn.com this year, the reason the campaign was
successful was due to three things
1. The idea was simple
2. The message was clear and uncluttered and delivered directly to the target audience
3. There was no selling or marketing speak involved – the message was the value proposition
• The campaign showed that Cadbury was well liked, by advertising the fact that it had
reached 1 million fans on Facebook
• It took interactivity to a new level on social media by actively involving fans in the 48 hour
• As Sarah Lindley, brand executive of
Dairy Milk at Kraft Foods said in a
marketingweek.co.uk article in 2012,
“This proves that if you give [fans]
something to go back for, they can be
tempted. You want to give people an
option for a very tiny effort on their
part to receive a very big reward…it has
to be easy to interact with and give
them something they will not get
• 350k people actively involved during the 48 hour construction process.
• 40k new fans gained.
• Through all media channels and networks an estimated 84 million reached.
• When evaluated against Boame’s ‘25 characteristics of highly effective social media campaigns’,
it too ticks many of the boxes.
• Not as successful as ‘Dumb Ways to Die’, but to have 350k people actively involved during the
48hr construction period could be deemed as spreading like wildfire.
• Once again, not spammy, but not insightful either, just a bit of silliness!
• The mental value of those involved was the opportunity to interact with the construction
process online with requests and decision making.
• The branding was obvious with the famous Cadbury purple on the walls, in the uniforms, even
the balloons were purple.
• A simple idea to say thanks, involved no selling at all.
• By increasing engagement with existing fans and acquiring new fans, relationships were built.
• A 3 tonne chocolate ‘thumbs up’ to say thanks, that’s innovative!
• Cadbury were listening, by responding to requests and involving those involved with decision
making. One Superfan ‘Denise’ got to lay the final piece of chocolate.
• It was well organised, you have to be to build a giant chocolate ‘thumbs up’.
• The real time video stream really drove engagement, and the spectacle of a giant chocolate
‘thumbs up’ got lots of pictures taken.