branding

Jennifer Aniston Heineken Commercial

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May 9  |  Brand Building  |   Ryan Clark

I’m a sucker for good/bad/rare ads and usually you’ll find Heineken in the mix. Obviously with my recent post on their latest advertising wonder, I just had to drum up one more for you folks this week. This one features Jennifer Aniston and while nothing too special, she provides enough star power to build enough brand buzz for the delicious beer company. I promise this will be the last Heineken commercial for a while!

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Miracle Whip & Pauly D Make For Great Marketing

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April 25  |  Brand Building  |   Ryan Clark

I recently saw the Miracle Whip ads coming out since I was home over the Easter Weekend. I don’t have cable at home, so I sometimes miss these unique ads that hit the cable networks. While Pauly D is only a fraction of the commercial, it’s how he was involved that got me interested enough to write about it. Instead of a boring run of the mill ad, Miracle Whip did something very different. The commercial you see below showcases both lovers and haters of Miracle Whip. This was a smart idea, and kudos to the marketing department who came up with it. They didn’t stop there either, the company has encouraged Youtube users to make their own love/hate response which is crucial to brand buzz. Instead of being forgotten in a couple of weeks, they’ll have built up long lasting hype with their fans. Just for the record, I’m a Miracle Whip lover!

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Dairy Queen Shaving Bunnies Commercial FAIL

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April 22  |  Brand Building  |   Ryan Clark

If you’re going to attempt to ride the wave of success Old Spice had with their viral commercials, at least do it right. Dairy Queen recently launched an ad with rainbows on fire and bunnies shaving some weirdo who likes like he should be doing the Brawny commercial. While I imagine this commercial will neither increase nor decrease sales, it does however make me question big brand marketing departments heavily. I know I’m forced to talk about it, and that will make some claim that it’s working…but someone had to bitch about it. Back to the drawing board DQ! Get back the team who did the flamethrower burger commercial!

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Big Brand Video Marketing: Let The Consumer Have Some Fun

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April 3  |  Brand Building  |   Ryan Clark

Big brands have a huge opportunity to have a little fun with their fans. and perhaps give your viral marketing team a breather. We’re all consumers, and some of your loyalists may be armed with an HD video camera, editing skills and the creativity to pull off something amazing. You may find it worth you companies while to dabble in the more socially interactive forms of video marketing. I’ve seen dozens of big brands do commercial contests, and from that I’ve seen videos that rivaled the big firms. Throw in a prize, let the winner receive their 15 minutes of fame and everybody wins.

Every moderate to popular product out there has some sort of consumer base, right? There’s always a good reason why your product has worked its way into the lives of all those people. Youtube is a great platform to let them showcase their own talents, for example let’s take a look at a current trend. Tea is undoubtedly making a come back, especially out here on the west coast. If we can dive deeper into the niche, outside the obvious health tea, let’s take a look at Blooming Tea (aka Flowering Tea). I saw this out there, and while it’s no big budget Hollywood showcase, it’s well done and makes me want the tea pretty bad.

This is a freshly done video so it will be interesting to see where it goes. I think this video is a great example of letting the fans do a little work. This isn’t done for BloomingTea.com by any means, but I certainly would have got in touch with the producer on this one. I would personally be thrilled if I saw something of this quality come from the social web. Hopefully these videos will spread the passion the producer has for you product, and the end goal is to make others feel and understand that same ka-pow!

Force The Creativity Out: Contests

 

Contests are always a great way to drive social media buzz, snag some links and spread brand awareness. This should almost surely bring out the talented video editors and bring forth a lot of great content. Large brands should have no problem getting a lot of interest and participation, which is why I’m surprised at the lack of social contests. A few good prizes and recognition will go a long way so talk to your marketing department to get the ball rolling!

I always recommend to clients thinking about it to head on over to Youtube, and just have a look at the other brands that have ran a video contest. From there, you can sniff out all sorts of interesting data such as how much social media interaction was achieved, how many links were acquired and other tid bits such as video views and perhaps even an impact of traffic (via Alexa or other sites).

Youtube offers a promoted video feature which should *never* be ignored by any big brand and their typical marketing budget. A good example of a current contest via Youtube is by L’Oreal Canada, and there opening video has nearly half a million views. Those views are nothing to shake a stick at, and you can get the ROI is going to be well worth the time and effort. For the sake if this post, here’s the video with the views;

 

The last tip we’ll give out here is make sure you identify influential Youtube “stars” within your vertical. L’Oreal has done this and we’ve always done the same for our clients. While your company may not need the help, it is such a fresh approach that won’t cost that much at all. You’d be surprised by how many of these “Youtube Stars” jumped at the chance for the exposure, and of course some free product! Regardless, it won’t cost much and it just builds deeper roots with your fans.

I’m sure most cosmetics companies by now have noticed the sheer amount of makeup tutorials on Youtube, so congrats to them for running yet another contest. I’d recommend to companies interested in all this to keep a close eye on how it all plays out for L’Oreal. If you happen to be a cosmetics company, check out all the things this company is doing online because it’s nothing short of awesome!


Let’s Hear From You

If you’re running a contest or have in the past of this nature, we want to hear from you and I can imagine so do our readers. I wish we here at Linkbuildr have actually done one for our own company, but you know how it is…too much work going on for other people to get anything done for ourselves.

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Link Building Reads For The Last Bit Of March

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March 23  |  TWiLB  |   Ryan Clark

Since I’m due in meetings and what not, I thought I would do a quick round up post to all the latest and greatest posts on link building and other things. There’s always so much great content flying around on any given week, so it’s sad I can’t get to this more often. As always. I love it when you leave links to great articles I missed in the comments, so by all means go to town on that. This one will mark off a new linking format where I’ll try and encompass not only link building, but branding, marketing and news all together. If all your doing these days is link building, then may the Google gods have mercy on you!

Link Building Reads:

Picture courtesy of Benuski

- Original ideas for building content for links via Word Tracker
- Don’t Break The Cardinal Rule Of LinkBait via Linkspiel
- Building links to get to page one via Webmaster World
- How To Rank Nationally With Local Links via Search Engine Journal
- How To Make a Link Bait That Goes Viral via TechLunatic
- 51 Essential Link Building Tips via Econsultancy
- 40 SEO Strategies For Ecommerce Websites via Kaiser The Sage

Branding Strategies:

- Why Would You Follow A Celebrity on Twitter? via Brand Republic
- The Triumph of Coal Marketing via Seth Godin
- Strategic Copywriting via The Branding Blog
- Brand Naming: Don’t Be Afraid To Use Humor – via Branding Strategy Insider
- Should You Brand a #Hashtag? via Online Journalism Blog
- 5 Branding Secrets You Can Learn From Google via Rohit Bhargava

Social Media Marketing:

- How To Find Hidden SEO Opportunities on Twitter via Search Engine Journal
- Blogging is Dead via Scott Monty
- 50 LinkedIn Tips: Most of Which Are Awesome via Soshable
- The Seven Second Rule of Social Media via TooGoom
- 5 Tips For Building Promotions Around Events via Blue Glass

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Chrysler Drops F-Bomb Via Twitter

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March 9  |  Brand Building  |   Ryan Clark

While some people would be offended to hear the F-word, most of us hear it on a daily basis so it’s no big deal really. When it comes to branding and watching what you say on behalf of your company, then that’s a different story. While it looked like the social media team for Chrysler may have accidentally dropped the F-bomb via their Twitter profile, it now is a case of being hacked…or at least that’s what they say. Regardless I’m all for it! While a few people will scoff at what has happened, the rest of the web is quick to talk about it on Twitter, Facebook and of course blogs. This means the links are pouring in and it’s a nice little bit of exposure for Chrysler.

So far I haven’t heard much of a negative response, but I’m sure Chrysler is doing all it can to make sure their image isn’t tarnished. If anything is learned here, and you have a slip up via social media like this then you can instantly claim you were hacked and begin an easy clean up process. Either way, the auto company will enjoy a couple days of buzz before the entire world forgets all about it…kinda like when they a launch a new car(zing!).

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Nissan GT-R Marketing In Germany: Porsche Owners Beware

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February 21  |  Brand Building  |   Ryan Clark

While it seems we’re going to get a lot of branding posts crossed with cars, mainly due to my bias and I’m the only one who writes for the blog so too bad! We do however get to see a lot of clever marketing within this industry, well clever everywhere but North America. With that being said, Nissan wanted to do something special to ignite the GT-R passion in the hearts of Porsche owners. This turned out to be something they managed to do quite easily and in a rather ingenious way might I add. I’ll let the video do the talking, but hopefully you learn a few guerrilla marketing lessons from the fine folks at Nissan.

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Facebook Contest Case Study

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February 8  |  Social Networks  |   Ryan Clark

As more and more companies and brands are scrambling to gain Facebook followers, the more requests we’ve had from clients to get on it. We’ve had a lot of success lately and I thought I’d share a few contest angles that work really well in the local and global market. Local companies though an really hone in their user-base quite easily, so listen up if you’re a smaller company wanting to hit big numbers.

While I cannot let you know which client it was I’m using the numbers for, I will let you know it was for the Vancouver BC area. The company is a contractor of sorts and beforehand, didn’t have much of a social media presence. I’ll run down what we recommended, and luckily got a generous budget of $3000 to play with which included the cost of the prize.

Step 1: The Prize

You’re going to need to really wet the appetite of the user, and giving away a coupon card for $25 just doesn’t cut it…not for the numbers we’re going after. For this client, we recommended two options, both he liked so much that we’ll be running the second come next month.

First up was an easy call, the iPad. Everyone wants one whether you’re in the cult of Mac or not. This prize is also worthy enough you can expect to get a lot of noise written about you, and it should attract the followers when they see your friends post about it on their wall.

In this case study, we did not have a 2nd and 3rd place prize set, but I would recommend that to juice it up a bit. But by the looks of the results, it isn’t needed when you have such a kick ass 1st place prize.

Step 2: Planning The Attack

The contest participation factor is key to getting the viral aspect of it all going. Make sure the contest requires the person to Like and post something to their wall pertaining to the Facebook contest. This is where the friends of friends will spread it like wildfire! So make sure the rules are clear as day and this alone is almost good enough to handle the rest…but we didn’t stop there.

Depending on your budget left over, you’re going to want to get the word out through the web and nab some links and social media buzz. There are many ways of doing this and I’ll list off a few of things we did that have resulted in huge return on our time. The CEO of the company literally sang our praises which always makes one feel good.

- Get a press release out to spread the word and nab a few more links
- Submit your contest to contest listing specific sites
- Submit your contest details to deal forums, most of which have a section for these
- Spread the word to local bloggers to see if they’ll make a post about it
- Get your Twitter followers RTing the good word
- Take out Facebook ads about it for your local area
- Do a Video talking about the contest and its rules
- Write about it on your blog..don’t forget this one

After doing all of the above, the company got a whole whack of traffic, and while it’s still too early to tell, over 50 link thus far. Those links were all natural and look great to diversify his link profile. The branding that has been set out is also just as powerful! They may not nab a lot of clients now, but down the road a lot of those people will turn into a lead. If not, they’ll at least be able to recommend you to a friend when they ask for a recommendation for services you offer. Chances are really good you’re going to be the only company that they remember.

Step 3: During The Contest

While the contest is running, make sure you’re actively chatting with the new followers, as well as the current. Keeping the buzz going is key and nows a good time to let the people get to know your company a little better. Be friendly, have fun and as well throw in some tips about doing what you do best.

This is also a great time to divert some of that traffic into your Twitter and get some more followers there. The company in this case study had a lot of followers trickle into their Twitter account which was pleasing. We found that the client had to get quite active in RTing and chatting via that media stream because a few good RT’s from powerful users sent us a lot of other contestants.

Last but not least, now would be a good time to offer discounts on your services to try and get some business right away.

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If you’d like our help designing, implementing and launching your next social media contest don’t hesitate to get in touch. We offer a wide range of affordable options that will get your company results. Even if you just want to quickly pick our brains, we’re more than happy to lend a digital hand.

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