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It's safe to say that at the prom that was Superbowl 2013, Oreo was queen. Maybe even king. To put it simply, every brand wanted to be Oreo after that. #popular. But should that be something to aspire to? Don't people eventually get tired of prom queens? I gave this some thought in the days that followed America's epic sports event. And while I certainly risk bodily harm dredging up the Superbowl, I feel like we need to address the Oreo situation and why it was so successful. So, for those of you who missed it, a recap: Oreo just launched a two-month campaignby asking fans this age-old question: Which part of an Oreo is better? As part of the campaign, folks were asked to submit photos of their favorite things on Instagram with one of two hashtags: #cookiethis or #cremethis. The best photos were then turned into'get this'cookie or crÃ¨me sculptures. Pics of the sculptures were then uploaded to IG. In tandem with their power outage tweet, Oreo's efforts nabbed them 50,000 followerson Instagram in a very short amount of time. Solid. (Digital.) Gold. ?? But as Oreo celebrates early victory with the campaign via the addition of tons of new Instagram followers, we need to resist the urge to attribute their success to a single approach. Why? Because it's dangerous for marketers to assign too much importance to picking the single 'right'? channel. Just like you can't make a 'viral video,'? you can't make inroads into a market via just one tactic. What made Oreo successful was that it packaged together a cohesive paid, owned and earned media strategy that made it impossible to ignore, and even afforded them the opportunity to capitalize on sentiment from the event with an off-the-cuff tweet about the power outage. Follow-up social activations will only serve to strengthen their efforts and sustain brand buzz. In short, they're making the campaign work by not letting this exercise turn them into a one-trick pony. The point is, there's never a single, silver-bullet style solution to developing digital strategy. And there shouldn't be. The campaigns that get noticed'like the one from Oreo'do so not because they pursued a single channel and crossed their fingers it'd work out, but because they did their homework and attacked on multiple fronts, and will continue to do so moving forward.
In the land of the blind, a one-eyed man is king. Or one-cookied. Luckily for Oreo, the margin between brands who 'get'? social media and those who don't continues to grow. With 21,035 likes; 6,987 shares; 15,767 retweets; and 5,860 favorites and counting, Oreo's tweet's reputation precedes it. In case you are not one of those who liked, shared or re-tweeted, the tweet read: "Power out? No problem. You can still dunk in the dark." The average alliteration was retweeted 10,000 times within the hour. What Oreo Got Right With half of Super Bowl ads containing a hashtag, Oreo was far from the only brand on the social media bandwagon. It wasn't the fastest, nor the most intelligent, but what Oreo's success is attributed to is a broader understanding of social's place in the media mix. Providing reporters with the 'inside scoop'? on the agency's quick thinking is what made the difference between 140 characters and the unofficial best ad of the Super Bowl. Controlling the Conversation It was not a brilliant quote, awe-inspiring design, or any cleverness beyond mere competence that lead to Oreo's success. By releasing statements to reporters hungry for material, in an age when the pre-releases of ads have stolen the currency right out of their pens, they pounced. In the world of social, too many brands allow poor practices to escape from them, for they provide much more interesting stories than brands doing it right. Bringing publicity to the people behind the tweets humanized the brand, which is arguably the most important goal of social media marketing. Twitter taboos are seemingly inevitable, and the key here is to strike preemptively. Seizing the Moment As Slate notes, the difference between Oreo's fleetingly famed spot and what dozens of other brands produced on the fly was not rocket science, nor was it magic. Oreo simply had a grasp on the bigger picture of social media. As a good friend and public relations professional once told me, 'A tweet is like throwing a shot of whisky into the ocean,'? in pursuit of getting a fish drunk. Well, Oreo told the press exactly where and how it threw that metaphorical shot, and like clockwork they stampeded in and celebrated it. Invite Your Fans In Brands and people alike often forget that while social provides the vehicle, it is really content that drives virality. For Oreo, the tweet was much more than a timely comment. It was bringing the audience into the 'mission control'? room with Oreo execs and the social media team - putting the viewer in their shoes. The self-proclaimed 'culture jacking'? romanticized and humanized the creative genius of the digital agency responsible and gave the brand more credibility for relinquishing control in a heated moment. Other brands also benefited exponentially from the ability to tap into the cultural zeitgeist to engage their audience, including: LifeStyles, Audi, Tide and PBS. Priceless ROI Today's 140 character or less landscape has upped our societal threshold for being impressed. Those hundred-thousand-dollar-plus seconds of ad time are doomed to fail, with such high expectations to live up to. That fact made earned media all the more priceless; the world was hungry for fame they could be all the more a part of, beyond choosing their own end to a commercial. Social Bowl XLVII Oreo captured the magic real-time broadcasting achieves, something brands have trouble with beyond sponsorship and experiential campaigns. What made this two-bit, essentially free advertisement's success surpass the billion-dollar, celebrity-studded TV spots was that it made viewers feel the brand was right there with them. When companies can show their loyalty through the highs and lows of something as emotional as the Super Bowl, people will want to show the loyalty right back. The Tweet in Summary Was it a stroke of luck or a stroke of genius that gave Oreo so much fame for so few dollars? In 140 characters or less: Oreo showed a higher understanding of the media landscape, and by calling it 'culture jacking,'? kept the magic alive. #Winning!
While we have our fair share of sports fanatics at AMP, the real attraction of the Super Bowl is the advertisements. We may or may not have been enthralled by brands' reactions to the unexpected power outage and the thigh master ad with Beyonce as well. That being said, check out AMPers' perspectives on the good, the bad and the ugly (Go Daddy's ad) and key takeaways for brands: WIN: Advertisements that Leveraged the Country's Sentiment Group Account Director, Tory Fyrberg, shares her opinion on why ads should reflect the mood of the country: "I always think the tone of big moments like the Super Bowl should reflect the mood of the country. The hope of financial recovery on the horizon (housing is up, unemployment is down) has overall mood on an upswing. I saw this optimism reflected in three main buckets of ads." Fun/Empowering/Embrace Life 'Taco Bell did a great job bringing to life the emotional and rational aspects of their brand'a fun night out with friends, regardless of age, ending with a late night snack,'? said Roseann Matteo, Group Account Director "I know most reactions to the Audi commercial were re: the missed connection of target consumer, but I actually think it connected perfectly. I see the target as being mature enough to look back on that moment (i.e. prom night) and established enough to be able to make this purchase a reality now,'? said Cara Francis, Account Coordinator. Hope/Love Budweiser ' 'Clydesdale'? Coke ' All you need is love Dodge Ram's "So God Made A Farmer" Sex Budweiser Go Daddy What's the message to brands? Always tap into the mood of your customers. In a national moment, listen to the collective mood and unite your customers. WIN: Advertisers that Extended Brand Engagement from Offline to Online Axe Lifeguard- Axe introduced Apollo and also extended the TV experience online, promoting the product through paid search on Google (screen shot below). They encouraged viewers to join at www.axeapollo.com but also ensured an ad was served if users simply search for 'axe.' Coca Cola- According to Derek Shore, Account Manager, "With the unprecedented downtime during the game, I turned my attention from the in-game spots to their ancillary counterparts online. Visiting www.cokechase.com after watching Coke's elaborate, albeit bland commercial, users could vote for which of the commercial's characters they wanted to 'win the Coke'? at the end of the game. After voting, visitors could 'sabotage'? the other characters, prompting another short, online video. Videos could also be posted to the viewers' social networks." Iana adds that the brand ensured a paid ad was served when someone was simply searching for 'Coke.'" Doritos 'Crash The Super Bowl'? Contest- Through the 'Crash the Super Bowl'? contest, fans could create their own Super Bowl ads to be voted on using the brand's Facebook app. The most voted on video, as well as a Doritos-selected runner up video, aired during the Super Bowl. Additionally, videos that ranked on USA Today's Ad Meter were eligible for cash prizes, with the highest ranked contestant winning a chance to work with Michael Bay on the new Transformers movie. TIE: Advertisers who Leveraged Celebrity Endorsements When used properly, celebrity endorsements like Paul Rudd and Seth Rogen's appearance in Samsung's 'Next Big Thing' spot, are extremely effective. The ad was brilliantly self-aware, witty, engaging and captivating- the perfect riff on current ad tactics with call-outs to the overuse of Psy (sorry Wonderful Pistachios) and crowd sourcing. As previously referenced, Wonderful Pistachios' use of Psy for its Super Bowl spot was a miss due to their tardiness in leveraging an internet sensation/meme. The ad could have been a hit 3 months ago. As Senior Content Planner, Sonja Jacob, believes, "Brands need to create content at the speed of culture by capturing the sentiment of the social world and crafting thoughtful brand dialogues that fuel movements and alter the digital landscape." Lastly, the tactic of having a celebrity in a Super Bowl spot for the sake of having a celebrity is no longer effective. Consumers crave authentic, meaningful experiences. While the tactic may create buzz, it is a flop in the end as reflected in the Brand Bowl Rankings (re: Best Buy, Go Daddy, and Toyota Rav4). TIE: Should Advertisers Pre-release Ads? Full disclosure: 1. I'm still bitter about the Pats. 2. I have a friend in town from Nashville and I'm not 100% of our plans for the weekend yet. 3. I tend to focus my efforts on the Puppy Bowl. Therefore ' I will likely NOT be tuning in for the Super Bowl. That being said, I'm a perfect example of why it makes sense for marketers to release their commercials early. Even if I didn't actively seek out some ads or get links in my inbox from industry publications, I would have already seen a handful of clips on the news & via my friends' Facebook feeds that I might have missed otherwise. Group Account Director, Karianne Kraus' speculates on whether brands will continue to pay the premium price point for ads: Living in a digital age, it is no surprise that a majority of the Super Bowl ads are online prior to the game. Since the New England Patriots are not in the big game this year, other than seeing if I win my office squares, the ads are the reason I will tune in tonight. In order to stay excited about watching the ads, I have been trying to shield myself from the online content'although I have given in to the teaser spots from Volkswagen and Samsung. While these have piqued my interest, I feel like watching tonight will be like reading a book when you already know how it ends. With all the eyeballs now garnered from the web, I wonder if marketers will continue to pay the $3.8 million per spot when leaking their ad pre-game will provide the word of mouth they desire. WIN: Advertisers producing content in real-time According to Graham Nelson, VP, Planning, "What we saw last night was a network and a ton of brands ill-prepared for the unpredictable. Most brands -- including CBS -- slapped a hashtag on their TV spot and hoped for groundswell. But the brands that won were the brands that seized the opportunity to respond real-time: Oreo, Audi, Tide, and LifeStyles." Account Coordinator, Cara Francis, seconds that opinion, stating, 'I think my favorite ad, though not technically a commercial, is Oreo's tweet 'Power out? No problem.'? The connection Oreo was able to make utilizing that timeframe while the power was out was invaluable. Comparably, Anheuser-Busch spent $20M on its ads last night, but with that single well-timed tweet at $0, Oreo clearly made a stronger ROI!'? What are your thoughts on the Super Bowl Ads? Do you agree or disagree with our perspectives? Leave a comment below.