Tuesday, February 20th, 2018 | 8 min read
The year is young, but standout brands have already hit the ground running with new and engaging social campaigns. They’ve tapped influencers, profiled customers, and even cut through the noise of the Super Bowl – and it’s only February.
Here are three social campaigns that have shone in 2018.
Uber is putting the spotlight on its top-performing drivers with its new campaign, Beyond 5 Stars, a reference to the rating system in the ridesharing app. In 2016, Uber launched Compliments, a feature that allows riders to write custom reviews for their drivers. For the campaign – which coincided with National Compliment Day – Uber handpicked some of the most complimented drivers in its database and profiled them with documentary-style video shorts.
Take this one about Fred, an 82-year-old driver from Seattle, who’s garnered Compliments like, “One of the most friendly people I have ever met. Not just as an Uber driver but as a person.”
Uber encouraged riders to share a compliment with their drivers and post some of their stories on social media with #BeyondFiveStars.
— Uber (@Uber) January 24, 2018
Uber also launched a similar series, Road to Best New Artist Nominee, during the 2018 Grammy Awards. The brand created videos with nominees Khalid, Julia Michaels, and Lil Uzi Vert as they shared their stories with their Uber drivers.
This campaign cut through the technicalities of the Uber app and told the human stories of the people who ride and give rides every day. It helps people realize that Uber isn’t just a quick and easy way to get around; it’s a way to meet new people, share stories, and add some joy to your journey.
On January 1, Weight Watchers announced that music producer and recording artist DJ Khaled would be its official social media ambassador. DJ Khaled is inviting social users to follow his weight loss journey as he documents his progress on Snapchat, Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook – where he has over 20 million followers combined.
PART 1. 🔑🔑 MAJOR KEY ALERT!!! 🔑🔑 In full 2018 🔑🔑 MAJOR KEY ALERT!!! 🔑🔑 In full 2018 mode…excited to be living this #WWFreestyle life with you. I already Got rid of 20 pounds and ready for more. Ride with me on my journey to greatness. Bless up Weight Watchers!!! #2018secured what I love about this it’s a life style and I still can enjoy at the same time ride wit me though this journey ! I CAN SHOW YOU BETTER THAN I CAN TELL YOU … I’m so focused let’s go!! @weightwatchers (People following the Weight Watchers plan can expect to lose 1-2 lbs./week.)
A post shared by DJ KHALED (@djkhaled) on
The campaign helps Weight Watchers expand beyond its Oprah influencer partnership and reach younger and more social savvy audiences. After all, DJ Khaled is already known as the “King of Snapchat,” having created ads for organizations like Nike and the MTV Video Music Awards.
As part of this partnership, DJ Khaled will also help promote Weight Watchers’ new WW Freestyle program, an expansion of the SmartPoints system, which recommends healthy “zero-points” foods for Weight Watchers customers. As DJ Khaled’s custom landing page states, “The WW Freestyle™ program gives me balance between my busy lifestyle and health. I can go back-to-back from the studio to business meetings, be there for my son Asahd, and still keep my new habits.” He then invites viewers to join him on the program and try a week for free.
Weight Watchers is already reaping the rewards of this new partnership. According to CNN Money, Weight Watchers shares rose more than 6% after the brand announced its initiative.
Red Stripe, the number one beer in Jamaica, came to the rescue this month for a team of Olympians.
Just days before the women’s bobsled competition began in PyeongChang, South Korea, Jamaica’s coach Sandra Kiriasis left over a dispute about her title. And since she leased the bobsled, she wouldn’t return it to the team unless they bought it from her. Without missing a beat, the Red Stripe USA Twitter account swept in with a huge offer. They’d buy the bobsled – which costs a whopping $50,000 – so the women could compete.
— Red Stripe USA (@RedStripeUSA) February 15, 2018
Of course, a social media manager doesn’t just offer to buy a sled on their own and click “Tweet.” This all happened because of clear and seamless communication throughout the organization. As The Washington Post reported, Red Stripe’s human resources director called the marketing team about this opportunity. And they quickly worked to see how they could help.
“We did some initial research to understand the cost of a bobsled,” said Red Stripe spokesman Bjorn Trowery. “Once we felt comfortable with the cost and were assured we were staying legally OK given Rule 40 [the Olympic rule that prohibits athlete marketing during the Games] guidelines, I drafted the tweet, we hit send and it’s been a whirlwind ever since.”
The spontaneous move not only makes Red Stripe look like the hero. It also boosts awareness, brand affinity, and purchase intent among beer drinkers, as these Tweets show:
Can you point me in the direction of how to buy some of this beer? I’m in California, but I’d love to buy some to help out.
— Rebecca Thompson (@Momof3gngrs) February 16, 2018
Putting my money where mouth is. pic.twitter.com/kwnTXwrBPL
— Damu K. Bobb (@DamuBobb) February 16, 2018
This rush to social could set the tone for the year ahead. According to Content Marketing Institute’s 2018 benchmarks report, 94% of B2B brands and 96% of B2C brands use social media for content marketing purposes. As these campaigns prove, they’re already getting started. And upcoming 2018 events like the Winter Olympics and Midterm Elections could see even more social campaigns sweeping the web.
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