With social media being such a huge part of marketing campaigns, it’s just expected that brands will put forth amazing, funny, eye catching content. Many big brands definitely deliver on this, but sometimes they stumble… or sometimes their social media is so boring and bland that everyone unfollows and forgets about them.
One of the big brands with really great social media presence is Domino’s. As far as fast food companies go, Domino’s is leagues ahead of their competition and consistently deliver engaging campaigns which have really elevated Domino’s reputation in the world of pizza over the last 8 years. Their first campaign came when sales had reached rock-bottom. The campaign they chose, The Pizza Turnaround, would have been a real risk for any other company as they were admitting to their shortcomings, exposed photography tricks, and featured negative tweets and clips from focus groups. The transparency paid off and reinvented the brand as an honest one. Since then, they’ve earned some serious street cred with younger customers due to their ability to keep up with trends. They’ve allowed people to order pizza simply by tweeting a pizza emoji in their tweet to eat campaign and delivered pizzas with robots and reindeer; whether or not these are effective forms of pizza delivery is questionable, but it was great for brand awareness! In 2016, Domino’s introduced Dom the Pizza Bot – an automated chatbot (which is super trendy for 2018!) for Facebook messenger. Dom is a super cute chat bot who definitely provides some laughs while ordering. With these examples, it’s easy to see why Domino’s is coming out on top!
You may be surprised to see that GE is joining my ranks as one of the top brands on social media, but seriously – their campaigns are genius! They’ve got an amazing Instagram full of beautiful photos! Starting in 2013, though they’ve run it a few times, visitors to the GE facilities are encouraged to use the hashtag #GEInstaWalk to share photos from their visits. In an unexpected twist, GE also has a Pinterest. They have many great boards, but my personal favourite is the one called “Hey Girl” which features pick up lines on photos of scientists. It’s not all about the kitschy, funny posts though. GE really sets themselves up as a leader in the industry, all the while showcasing their own technology, with some really amazing science videos (and this is coming from a girl who has gotten most of her science knowledge from Bill Nye). GE jumped on board with Snapchat early, in 2014, and have been using it to connect and engage younger audiences by posting informative science videos and even hosting special guests such as Buzz Aldrin in celebration of the 45th anniversary of the moon landing. In 2016, the took social media with them as they set up sensors inside a volcano in Nicaragua. We could all follow along with this amazing journey on Snapchat and Instagram – talk about cool!
Not all brands knock it out of the park with their social media attempts. It’s difficult, however, to think of many brands that don’t have a great social media strategy. It’s easy though to think of some blunders big brands have made when posting online. Maybe they’ve uploaded the wrong photo or offended someone, by now I think we’ve seen it all! Dove is known for its great “Real Beauty” campaigns which aim to boost women’s self esteem, but dropped the ball last year when they decided to reshape their shampoo bottles to reflect the different shapes and sizes women come in. While this may *sound* like a great idea, in reality it offended a lot of people who claimed that this campaign shows that \there is best body after all.
And who could forget the infamous Kendall Jenner Pepsi Ad? The ad caused a huge amount of controversy when it was accused of being a tone deaf ad which trivalising the Black Lives Matter movement by having their product seem like the answer to peace during a protest. A boycott was immediately called and the ad was removed, but Pepsi’s reputation has taken a hit.
The Little Guys
When it comes to social media strategies that are bad overall, we can usually look to smaller businesses who maybe don’t have the know-how or the funds to get a great, effective campaign off the ground. Recently, I drafted a new social media strategy for a non-profit graduate scheme which I had the pleasure of being apart of last year. With the exception of revamping the website, the suggestions I made were things the company can do for free with the use of social media. These are things like coming up with keywords and allowing for reviews via Facebook to increase their SEO and making a calendar for their posts. The company is super fortunate in that they employ around 90 young people each year – 90 talented young people! We had bloggers, photographers, and videographers in year. Harassing the talents within your organisation can be a great way to boost moral and seriously improve your social media! Also, young people know what they’re doing online for the most part and can give some really great, creative suggestions! Chatteris, the non-profit I was involved with, also has a really amazing company culture! There are weekly events which include everything from Street Food Tasting to Learning African Dance, clubs, sports teams, and work parties. Focusing on these events and posting about your awesome company culture can really boost your business’s social media as well!
Social media isn’t always easy… not even for the big guys! We can learn from the success of the big guys – being creative and having fun with it can go a long way in improving your reach- and can also learn from their failures -knowing your audience and ensure that you are being sensitive towards them- which can save you from making some embarrassing blunders like Dove and Pepsi!