Tag Archives: marketing

Dunkin’ Donuts Facebook Promotion: Be The ‘President’ Via Foursquare, Facebook Places

Dunkin' Donuts Promotion Uses Facebook, Foursquare, Facebook Places“Who wants to be mayor when you could be President?”

Dunkin’ Donuts just launched a new promotion giving their Facebook fans a chance to become the “President of Dunkin’ Nation.”  Customers compete by checking in on Foursquare or Facebook Places, and a new “President” will be named each week until September 23.

How this social media promotion works:

  • customers ‘like’ Dunkin’ Donuts Facebook page
  • these new fans register via their Foursquare or Facebook Places account
  • checkins are allowed once per hour, up to 10 times per day
  • the fan with the most checkins each week is eligible to become the ‘President of Dunkin’ Nation’ for the week (5 winners total)
  • a leaderboard on the Facebook page allows participants to track their competition in realtime

Each ‘President’ will win a 50″ LCD TV, a $200 Dunkin’ Donuts gift card, a Dunkin’ Nation President t-shirt and mug.  There is also a potential reward for those who are less fanatical followers of the brand – 33 ‘Daily Sweeps’ Winners will receive $25 gift cards just for checking in over the course of the promotion.

Dunkin’ Donuts shows a clear desire to raise their number of Facebook fans (currently just under 4 million); hence the choice to ‘like-gate’ this social media promotion.  According to Kevin Vine, Dunkin’s brand division interactive marketing manager, the company hopes for 100,000 participants in the promotion. However, he told Mashable it’s more about brand loyalty – with the aim of “celebrating and rewarding” the company’s “dedicated fans” on social media – than it is about driving traffic to actual locations.

The ability to checkin up to ten times per day raises concerns about spam, according to Mashable, especially since Facebook Places users cannot opt out of broadcasting their checkins to friends on the social network (Foursquare users do have this option).

Will this be an advantage – the more notifications about Dunkin’ Donuts in user newsfeeds, the better?  Or could the frequency of checkins become a detriment, as friends get frustrated by the number of Dunkin’ Donuts mentions on their newsfeed?

How much brand awareness is ‘too much’ on social networks? Let us know what you think.


Facebook Promotion: Smirnoff Fans Can ‘Strike A Pose’ For Madonna

Smirnoff Facebook Promotion With MadonnaSmirnoff just launched a new Facebook campaign, the Smirnoff Nightlife Exchange Project, which will also help Madonna pick a dancer for her next tour.  Facebook fans of the vodka brand can share their nightlife experiences via the social networking site, and the promotion will culminate in 50 parties – taking place simultaneously –  on November 12, when “50 countries will exchange the best of their nightlife.”

One of these parties will be attended by the queen of “Vogue” herself, and dancers will compete in front of Madonna for the chance to win a spot on her upcoming tour.  Dancers from around the world can submit 60-second videos of themselves on Smirnoff.com from August 17 through October 10.

Madonna Joins Smirnoff's Facebook PromotionThis will be Madonna’s first album since 2008, and it’s her first big foray into social media promotion.  She has just under 6 million fans on the social network, but has no official presence on other forms of social media, as reported by Mashable.  Her Facebook page says “Madonna is on a quest to discover her next dancer.  Could it be you?” and encourages users to “like this page to get involved.”

Power to the People: 52% of Consumers Believe They Can Use Social Media to Influence Brands

Consumers Use Social Media to Influence BrandsPerformance marketing agency Performics recently released a report about the interactions between consumers and brands on social networks, and the impact that social media conversations can have on brands.

The social media study found that 52% of respondents strongly or somewhat agree that voicing opinions on social networking sites can influence the business decisions of companies/brands.  And 31% purchase more from companies/brands that they like or follow on social networks than from those they do not.

Brands Influenced by Opinions on Social NetworksThe study, titled “S-Net, The Impact of Social Media,” highlights findings specific to 18 different industries: alcoholic beverages, apparel, appliances, automotive, education, electronics, entertainment, financial services, food, healthcare/pharma, household, magazines/newspapers, non-alcoholic beverages, personal care, restaurants, sports related, telecommunications and travel.  The respondents surveyed used social networks, including Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, YouTube, and LinkedIn.

Additional highlights from the report:

  • educational institutions (79%), sports (79%) and entertainment (74%) topped the list of most discussed categories on social networking sites
  • the majority of respondents discuss brands/products on social networking sites to compare prices (59%), to talk about sales/specials (56%) or to provide feedback to brands (53%)
  • respondents who purchase household (29%), telecommunications (28%) and healthcare/pharma (28%) products were more likely to voice their complaints via a social networking site
  • 26% think brands should communicate with their fans/followers once per week on social media; 28% think it should be once per month

Some industry-specific results:

  • 53% follow travel companies/brands on social networking sites for coupons/discounts
  • 43% follow electronics companies on social networking sites for offers to win points or online currency redeemable for products
  • 42% discuss automobiles on social networking sites to compare prices
  • 32% have made a sports-related product purchase as a result of seeing something posted on a social network

Based on the study results, Performics recommends that marketers respond to the specific customer desires for brand interaction in their category/industry, concentrate their efforts on the “most relevant and appropriate” social networks, and engage in social media monitoring.

The study was based on a 30-minute online survey used to collect information from 2,997 U.S. respondents, who access at least one social network weekly. To qualify for a category section, respondents had to make at least one purchase in the designated category in the past six months.


Facebook Marketing: Toyota Crowdsources Philanthropy

This summer Toyota is running a Facebook marketing campaign – “100 Cars For Good” – designed to give fans the chance to vote on which charities receive a new car.  The initiative gives one car to a nonprofit everyday for 100 consecutive days, with fans choosing from five different charities each day.  Anyone checking out Toyota’s Facebook page can participate – they do not have to ‘like’ the brand in order to vote – through August 16th.

The effort was created to get consumers to engage with Toyota via social media, and to participate in something meaningful to them.  The campaign has been promoted by Facebook ads and online display ads.  ClickZ reports that Toyota worked directly with Facebook on this initiative.

The nonprofit organizations featured have the chance to win that day’s car, and also receive pro bono Facebook credits to advertise their organizations, helping them to begin or expand their social media presence and get more ‘likes’ in the process.

How will this compare to other big brand attempts at engaging consumers with marketing for the “social good”?

Facebook Marketing: Newsfeed Impressions Matter More Than the Number of Fans

The recently released “The Power of Like: How Brands Reach and Influence Fans Through Social Media Marketing” study, a collaboration by comScore and Facebook, suggests that the reach and frequency of brand impressions on Facebook may be more important that the number of Facebook fans.  The study looks at unpaid impressions for three major brands – Starbucks, Southwest Airlines and Bing – to see the impact of brand exposure, and how brand impressions reach friends of fans.

According to the study, for every fan of a brands’ page on Facebook, there are an additional 34 friends that can be reached (on average for the top 100 brand pages).  The main way to gain exposure to friends of your brands’ fans on Facebook is via the newsfeed; it is “the primary location where branded content is consumed.”

  • Users see their newsfeed 27% of the time while on Facebook; the newsfeed shows brand interactions by their friends
  • Users are between 40 and 150 times more likely to consume branded content in the newsfeed than to visit a particular brand’s page

Starbucks was the star among the three brands studied, though the brand also started with a much higher fan base.  Starbucks has over 24 million Facebook fans, Bing over 1.7 million, and Southwest over 1.6 million.  Starbucks had the most earned brand impressions per Facebook page view, with 156.  Bing had 45 impressions per fan page views on Facebook, and Southwest had 42.

The study also indicates that, when dealing with a brand with a large following, social media can ‘deliver impressions comparable with that of other digital ad campaigns.’ For Southwest and Bing – both with smaller Facebook followings – their social media brand impressions were fairly negligible compared to their existing online display ad campaigns. However, unpaid social media impressions increased total online impressions by a whopping 64% for Starbucks.

How often does your brand post on Facebook, and how many fans will see those posts?  According to the study, in average 16% of fans will see brand content if that brand posts 5 of 7 days, and posting an additional day will slide the average up to 18.5%.  This is relatively consistent with the level of reach between Facebook friends – a status update generally will reach around 12% of the average Facebook user’s friends.

Why do users miss content from their Facebook friends and the brands they like?

  • they may not be logged onto the site during the times when brands or their friends are active
  • the Facebook Newsfeed only delivers the the content it deems “most relevant” to a user at the top of the feed

Facebook accounts for 90% of the time Americans spend on social networking sites, and 100% of the Ad Age Top 100 advertisers have established Facebook brand pages.  The study concludes that “brands can realize significant untapped benefits by understanding and focusing on reaching the friends of their fans on Facebook.”

The study was conducted in May 2011. Download the full study here.

GMC and Buick ‘Build Your Own’ Car Feature Adds Facebook Integration

Many car manufacturers offer potential consumers the ability to build or customize a vehicle on their website.  GMC and Buick are taking this a step further and incorporating social media into the process, allowing consumers to share their virtual vehicle with Facebook friends, and see the response via comments and ‘likes.’

The consumer gains the opportunity to solicit feedback from friends about their potential vehicle purchase, while GMC and Buick see their brand effectively marketed via the consumer.

According to Janet Keller, GMC’s digital and social media manager, one-quarter of GMC.com’s monthly visitors use the vehicle-building tool.  She told Direct Marketing News, “We already know that consumers are asking their friends and family about their vehicle selection, so why don’t we just bring that together in one seamless experience on GMC.com?”

Integrating with Facebook doesn’t just allow the consumer to share their vehicle ideas; it also gives the automotive brand valuable metrics regarding consumer preferences. Once consumers connect via their Facebook accounts, GMC and Buick can see how consumers design their vehicles, and what they (and their Facebook friends) like the most, knowledge which can be tied to purchases.  The automakers also get permission to access their basic profile information, and the publicly shared interests there help the brand to tailor future marketing communications.

The integration does not provide GMC or Buick with a way to reach out to customers to build and share vehicles – the brands can only message those who “like” their Facebook page.

The Facebook integration with GMC.com is currently only available via desktop, although both automakers plan to create Facebook “Build a Vehicle” apps that will have a mobile-friendly version, possibly available this year.

The goal, according to Keller? “The ultimate gold standard is to be able to connect how people are engaging on GMC.com and with the tool and ultimately be able to lead that into sales and how this tool helps to facilitate sales at the bottom line.”

37% Trust What Friends/Family Say About Brands On Social Media

A recent study by Knowledge Networks and MediaPost Communications surveyed teen and adult social media users about their reaction to brands and product recommendations on social media.  Overall, 37% of respondents trust what friends and family say about a brand or product on social media, while only 10% trust what a stranger says, as reported by eMarketer.

However, the level of trust varies by the type of social media:

  • 26% trust what friends and family members say in blog posts
  • 25% trust friends and family posts on social media sites
  • 20% trust friends and family tweets
  • only 7% trust the blogs and posts of strangers
  • just 5% trust strangers’ tweets

Conducted in May 2011, “The Faces of Social Media” study also looked at how customers interact with social media via mobile during the shopping process. According to the survey, 40% of respondents access social media via mobile phone, up from 28% in September 2010. Fully half of mobile web users “interact with social media at some point in the shopping process:”

  • 27% of US mobile internet users use social media to compare or check prices before, during or after shopping
  • 24% check reviews
  • 16% get coupons or discounts for local businesses

Brand relationships and purchase decisions are increasingly influenced by social media:

  • 23.1 million teen and adult social media users discover new brands or products through social media (up 22% from 2010)
  • 22.5 million use social media to learn about unfamiliar brands or products (up 9%)
  • 17.8 million are strongly influenced in their purchase decisions by opinions in social media (up 19%)
  • 15.1 million refer to social media before making purchase decisions (up 29%)

The presence of social media (especially via mobile) in shopping and purchase decisions continues to grow and gain influence, as does the importance of friend and family recommendations made via these networks.  It will be interesting to see how this trend ties into geo-location apps, such as Foursquare and Facebook Places.  Will your friends’ purchases or favorites someday show up when you check in to your favorite store?

How Honest Tea Used Live Streaming To Engage Customers (And Test Their Honesty)

Honest Tea embraced a realtime, interactive broadcast platform for its latest marketing campaign.  In what VentureBeat calls “a marketing stunt disguised as test of citizens’ honesty,” the organic beverage company set out unmanned displays of cold tea bottles in various cities, with hidden webcams to show whether customers paid for their tea on live-streaming video.

The pop-up tea stores were placed in prominent locations in 12 major cities throughout the US on July 19th, and customers could purchase tea on the honor system, one dollar per bottle.  Hidden cameras and live interactive broadcasting via Ustream allowed viewers to check the honesty of each passer-by that engaged with the campaign.  (Signs were posted explaining the legal rights to live broadcast/record the event, but the cameras were hidden).

Aimed at “young, tech-savvy professionals” who use social media, the streaming video was an important part of this marketing campaign, according to Honest Tea VP of Marketing Peter Kaye.  He told VentureBeat, “The live streaming certainly helped.  We will have doubled our number of ‘likes’ [on Facebook] to over 60,000 in one day.”  The Honest Tea Facebook page now has 69,688 fans. Social media allows customers to engage in conversation about the campaign before it started, during, and after.

Why is live streaming becoming an increasingly popular platform for advertisements?

  • high cost-per-thousand (CPM) ad rates (think the Super Bowl, American Idol, etc)
  • high levels of engagement it can command, via what Ustream CEO John Ham calls “simultaneous reach”
  • live video allows customers to see a new aspect of the campaign, in this case observing others’ choices in realtime

Honest Tea evaluated honesty on a city-by-city basis, with Chicago leading – 99% of visitors paid for their tea – while New York came in last – only 86% paid for their tea.  The stand on Wall Street, NYC was more honest (89%) than in Los Angeles (73%).  No pop-up store in your city? Online users were also polled, 99% of whom said they would pay for their tea.

The bottom line from VP of Marketing Kaye: “It is real time, and a good way to showcase what we have going on. It is very worthwhile and a very good investment.”  When asked whether the company would live stream again, he responded “I think definitely,” although he didn’t rule out the possibility of using other live stream platforms, including Livestream.com, Justin.tv and Stickam.com.

Watch a video summarizing the campaign here:

[iframe width=”640″ height=”390″ src=”http://www.youtube.com/embed/L8mbxsWKCAQ” frameborder=”0″ /]

72% of Brand Marketers ‘Currently Using Mobile’ Plan To Increase Mobile Ad Spending

A new survey by the Interactive Advertising Bureau confirms that mobile advertising platforms are being adopted rapidly by marketers.  The most striking data: 72% (nearly three-quarters) of survey respondents are looking to increase their mobile advertising budget over the next two years, and 35% expect to increase mobile ad spending by over 50 percent in that same timeframe.

The study – entitled “Marketer Perspectives on Mobile Advertising” – surveyed over 300 top brand marketing executives “currently using mobile in their media mix.” Of those:

  • just over half (51%) currently ‘treat mobile platforms as an integral element of their overall advertising strategy’
  • 35% are ‘experimenting’ with mobile
  • 14% are tapping into mobile on an ad-hoc basis

Respondents felt the following were key benefits of mobile advertising:

  • Immediacy (considered of high importance by 57% of respondents)
  • Cost-effectiveness (54%)
  • Increased engagement (52%)

When asked which mobile devices are most important in current campaigns, respondents chose:

  • Smartphones (a high priority for 60% of respondents – twice as important as any other device)
  • Tablets (31%)
  • Feature phones (22%)
  • Ebooks (10%)
  • Connected games consoles (3%)

Respondents were also asked what challenges they faced attempting to incorporate mobile into their campaigns.  The main issues:

  • Device fragmentation (cited by 72% of respondents as a challenge of medium or high importance)
  • Privacy issues (70%)
  • Lack of standardized metrics (69%)
  • Limited opportunity for creative (60%)**

**The study revealed that 62% of respondents do not use creative agencies for mobile advertising, but of those few that do use creative agencies for mobile, 85% felt the partnership produced ‘good results.’

The survey was conducted by Ovum Consulting in April-June 2011 on behalf of IAB. Interviews were conducted with key marketer decision makers and budget holders.

Colgate Launches ‘Smile’ Campaign via Facebook

On June 28th, Colgate launched a new campaign in Britain encouraging fans to take pictures of themselves smiling, post them to Facebook, and potentially have their photo displayed on digital billboards in the UK.  The toothpaste brand aims to collect 1 million ‘smile’ pictures by summer’s end, and will donate £100,000 to Barnardo’s (a UK children’s charity) if that goal is reached.

UK fans of the toothpaste brand can upload their ‘smile’ photos onto Colgate’s UK Facebook page, and the photos will randomly appear on billboards in London, Liverpool and Birmingham.  The campaign was created by VML London, and ClickZ quotes VML account manager Gemma Brown, “Integrating the photos of Facebook users is a good fun incentive for anyone who’s dreamed of starring in their own billboard campaign.”

Will Colgate reach its goal of 1 million smiles? Is ‘randomly’ being on a billboard – and/or the opportunity to support a popular charity – enough incentive to engage with a brand on Facebook?