Social media marketing campaigns are nothing new, but each year they keep getting better and better. To celebrate this fact, Facebook have been running annual awards for the best creative campaigns over the past few years.
And now, the best creative Facebook and Instagram campaigns from the past year have been announced – with blue, gold, silver, and bronze award winners.
The highest honor is the blue award (correlating with the Facebook logo), and this year had two winners:
#LikeAGirl – Always
The “Like a Girl” campaign proved to be very popular, with P&G creating a video that not only highlights a gender inequality, but also showcases a form of inspiration for children and young adults alike. All this, whilst promoting their own brand.
The brand in this case was Always, in the feminine hygiene category, with the campaign striking in the hearts and minds of the key audience. What does it mean to do something like a girl? Why, only positive things of course, as this video addresses.
It makes sense then, that this was the most celebrated campaign this year, winning both the coveted blue award, and a gold award. This campaign managed to build an emotional relationship with women and girls alike, and spread both the brand and message like wildfire.
ALS Ice Bucket Challenge
This is notable as it isn’t a traditional creative marketing campaign, but rather a series of videos created by the public with a central theme, all in the name for charity.
One of the biggest viral campaigns of the past year, the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge took the world by storm. The concept was for members of the public to soak themselves in a bucket of ice cold water, simulating the symptoms of ALS, and then nominate friends to take part. It’s a bit of fun, whilst also promoting a very worthwhile cause, and raising awareness for an otherwise largely unknown disease.
Starting off small, it culminated in getting some of the most recognised faces from around the globe to take part. For instance, take a glance at Bill Gates getting drenched in the video below.
17 million videos were created, 159 countries participated, 70 billion video views were counted and $220 million was raised.
This year saw 7 creative campaigns awarded a gold award, and we have listed some of the best below:
I Will What I Want
Under Armour have an overly masculine image within the sports apparel sector, and wished to appeal to women too. This creative campaign takes a look at women who defy expectations, and don’t care about judgement from anyone else.
To do this, they used a multi-channel campaigns utilising social media, and Facebook in particular. This incorporated online video to be shared and start a conversation.
Results of the campaign:
Generated 5 billion media impressions worldwide
$35 million dollars in earned media
+42% traffic to UA.com
Love has no labels
This campaign generated a lot of intrigue and interest among the public, being a genuinely entertaining piece of content before touting itself as a social media campaign of any kind.
The concept revolves around research showing many people consider themselves unprejudiced – yet people make snap judgements on a daily basis. This campaign demonstrated to the audience that they themselves hold some form of snap judgement, rather than lecturing them on the topic. This x-ray installation shows skeletons dancing and kissing, to reveal it was, in fact, two women – proving the implicit bias we may have.
The skeleton video launched on Upworthy’s Facebook wall went immediately viral (over 40 million views in two days). It became the 2nd most viral PSA in history after just 3 weeks. At time of entry, combined views exceeded 100 million and climbing.
This year had 6 silver awards given out, and our favourites are below:
Lebanon had no law to protect women from the harm of domestic violence, and so Kafa have been working to introduce a law. With the help of this social campaign, the law got passed.
Becoming more than a campaign, it was a movement where people began posting pictures with red thumbs online, in order to spread the word of this movement, with celebrities and brands getting in on the act.
More than 20,000 physical and digital red thumbs gathered
A 700% increase in online conversations about domestic violence
A 350% increase in comments on Kafa’s Facebook page
1.7 million USD in earned media
2 million people exposed to the campaign from the TV news coverage in a country of 4 million
Most Importantly, the LAW PASSED.
Buds for Buds
This Budweiser campaign wanted to appeal to younger drinkers, who spend more time online. They promoted an online mobile experience allowing friends to share beers with one another across the globe – all through a quick text, email, or through Facebook itself.
Touted as a way to connect with friends in a meaningful way, it allowed Budweiser to make an impact on social media, and gain mass appeal whilst introducing the product to people who may not otherwise try it.
Specifically, the program achieved 23 million earned media impressions, 3x in-bar sales lift (meaning people spent three times the value of the beer when redeeming at the bar/POS), redemption at 100% of participating bars (thereby increasing on-premise spend and traffic during the program), and 7x industry average purchase conversion rate.
Build a GLA on Instagram
One of the more complex and inventive campaigns on the list, Mercedes-Benz wanted to appeal to younger car buyers, and with the launch of their new GLA, they saw an opportunity with Instagram.
This creative idea featured a build-your-own feature, allowing for deep personalisation through social media. Through the new tagging feature on Instagram, consumers could choose wheels, roofs, grills, and colours of their GLA, and then get a quote.
This was achieved by creating hundreds of different accounts, with thousands of relevant images with the options that can be customised, and would all click through to one another until the user finally has their desired vehicle.
The experience drove over 100,000 Instagram likes, and 20,000 new followers to the @mbusa account. There were thousands of builds and sentiment was overwhelmingly positive, with comments such as “I loved this”, “…this is something different…. something good” and “You guys rock”.
2015 was home to 15 bronze awards, which are still incredible campaigns. Some top picks are below:
Facebook 1000 to 1 – Lexus
With the launch of the new Lexus NX Turbo, Lexus wanted to appeal to new audiences who perhaps wouldn’t consider style when looking at SUVs. Lexus wanted people to be aware they can have utility, whilst also maintaining the style they deserve.
Facebook allows for deep targetting by interest and affinity, and Lexus made the use of this by targetting by demographics, interests, location, and vehicle affinity. Many different versions of video were created in order to appeal directly to specific audiences, whether it’s a woman interested in fashion who likes Audi, or a man interested in music who has previously owned a BMW.
To date, the Lexus NX campaign has reached over 11.2MM unique Facebook users and delivered over 10.8MM video views. With an engagement rate of 26.67 %, we’ve beaten the auto industry benchmark of 1.50% by 16x. In addition, the NX campaign is Lexus’ most efficient Facebook campaign to date; achieving a cost per view of $0.04, a 300% increase in efficiency. With re: to sentiment, over 72% of applicable user comments were positive.
Lowe’s are a home improvement retailer looking to enhance their online visibility, and saw Instagram as the perfect place to do so.
When Instagram launched a video feature, it allowed for Lowe’s to showcase a number of projects that can be created. Hyperlapse was later launched as an accompanying app to create timelapse videos for Instagram, which allowed the brand to create stories around projects people at home could create themselves.
A brand survey for the Super Bowl HyperMade videos revealed that the campaign drove a significant 12 point lift in recall of ads for Lowe’s between the control and exposed group and a 17 point lift in recall of ads for Lowe’s amongst the 35-44 age group.
What can we learn from these creative social media marketing campaigns?
Brands need to be able to tell a story about what their latest campaign is all about, or what they can offer as a brand themselves.
Many of these campaigns have a positive message behind what it is that’s being promoted; whether it’s for charity, to improve the life of the consumer, or to generally raise awareness of an important societal point.
More videos and content has been optimised to be shared on mobile devices, as many social media users will be using the Facebook or Instagram app on their mobile or tablet device.
Generate interesting content
Many brands will forget to generate content that is genuinely interesting, or will entice a customer to watch or view the content in question.
Think – why should someone stop on their social media timeline to view your promotional material? If you’re creating interesting content that people will click, and somehow tie your brand’s message in there, then you’re on the right track. The audience should most likely gain something from your content – whether it’s entertainment, a particular deal, or knowledge they wouldn’t gain otherwise.
Videos help to connect
As you can see from the above campaigns, most of these featured video content as the cornerstone of their campaigns. Facebopok stated 70% of their submissions were video-based, and the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge managed to prove how user-generated videos can help spread awareness incredibly quickly, and essentially take the world by storm.
Instagram is big news
Facebook had included Instagram campaigns this year, and there’s a reason for that. Instagram is quickly becoming a dominant social network that can no longer be ignored, and marketers are starting to learn this.
It’s the place to find the most coveted audience of millennials, and boasts a captive audience who check their feed multiple times a day. As it’s a purely visual network, there’s a lot of creativity that can occur, and it’s important that more brands make the most of the platform.
If you need help in generating a new social media campaign, or getting your brand known online with any other form of marketing, get in touch with the team here at Xanthos, with over 13 years’ of experience in digital marketing.