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Facebook's success hasn't only netted its founders, early employees and investors billions of dollars, the world's largest social network has built an ecosystem that has served as the foundation for other businesses collectively worth billions.
From large social gaming companies like Zynga all the way to individual developers building Facebook apps out of their bedrooms, Facebook's launch of a development platform in 2006 proved to be a game-changer for online entrepreneurs.
I woke up last Monday after a weekend of not much social media, and while checking my networks on the train to work I discovered that about 6m people had beaten me to watching Dumb Ways to Die, which could also be re-named as “the little train safety campaign that could”.
As I type (a week later), it is sitting on a tidy 26,697,158 YouTube views. It's certainly getting a seat at the table of greatest viral campaigns ever.
That’s no mean feat for a public transport authority in Melbourne, Australia, using an unknown artist, and no media spend. It seems to be targeting the youth market, and they appear to be going about it the right way.
According to Econsultancy's recently published Content Marketing Survey, the number of search queries for the phrase 'content marketing' has more than doubled in the past two years, a reflection of the fact that more and more companies are turning to content marketing to promote their wares.
When used effectively, content can be one of the most powerful marketing tools, but many companies dipping their toes in the content marketing water are making huge mistakes in how they develop and execute their strategies.
I’ve spotted a few outdoor ads / campaigns recently that I think are worth sharing. They blend innovation, creativity, technology and interactivity in a number of different ways.
You may think that offline ads aren’t especially relevant to internet marketers, but some of the more successful viral ads have been based around offline events (the Carlsberg biker video, for starters), and often involve real people and real reactions. If I was in charge of brand marketing for a large company then I’d be ploughing this particular furrow with vigour.
These ads can generate an incredible amount of noise and love (as highlighted in the TNT example below). It’s telling that a big budget TV ad such as Volkswagen’s ‘The Force’ is seeded online first these days. In terms of a feedback loop, there is none better than the internet.
Anyhow, some of these ads contain sound, so you might need some headphones. Enjoy!
There’s clearly no secret formula for viral success otherwise we’d all be doing it.
In fact, there’s nothing worse than a client briefing an agency to devise a viral campaign as it completely misses the point about how good ideas are generated.
A viral campaign is a desired outcome, not the basis for developing break-through campaigns or memes. That said, there are definite skills, techniques and approaches which we can deploy to improve our chances of viral success.
In fact, Propagation Planning is a relatively new school of thought which is dedicated to this very concept. In theory, the more we understand how communities behave and share ideas, the better we’ll get at creating compelling advertising campaigns which self-propagate.
As Griffin Farley, Strategy Director from BBH succinctly puts it “Plan not for the people you reach, but for the people they reach”.
Developers hoping to cash in on the app gold rush today face a harsh reality. Competition is fierce, standing out can seem like an impossible task and well-heeled companies are capable of producing bigger and better apps more rapidly than ever before.
Even so, app store success stories like keep developers going.
This probably seems like 'newsjacking'. It might be. I'll try to get to bottom of what makes ‘Benton’ so shareable. (For the record, I know it's actually 'Fenton').
People in the digital industry are obsessed with memes because they spend all their days on the internet.
And it’s obviously clear that the recreation of this level of ‘sharability’ is the holy grail for brands, who find it difficult to convince the customer to suspend their disbelief when being sold to.
Some sources point to a shared piece of content being three times more likely to be viewed than a ‘paid’ piece. Below I attempt a cod analysis of ‘Benton’, to find out what makes him so sharable, along with some famous examples of adverts and video content that apply the same principles.
Despite the fact that Twitter has been slowly building up its advertising offerings, and is making money from them, advertising on the popular microblogging service is still far more difficult to come by than, say, Facebook.
That's because Twitter's ad offerings, which include Promoted Tweets and Trends, are fairly unobtrusive.
The seemingly endless parade of thousands of brands you’re faced with in the weekly ‘big shop’ means it’s sometimes impossible to know where to start.
Similarly, opening my email inbox only to be confronted by a mob of generic and impersonal marketing emails trying to feed me their latest offers can be overwhelming to say the least.
Sarah Wood is Founder and Operations Director at viral video marketing agency Unruly Media.
I've been asking Sarah about what makes a social video campaign successful, measurement of campaigns, and how she sees the market developing in future...
Beatbullying’s The Big March campaigning for children’s rights took place this week and was a huge success with 850,000 pledging their support and asking Government for help to protect all children and young people from bullying, violence and harassment.
It was the World’s first virtual online protest attracting support from children, young people, parents, teachers and celebrities, as well as global brands, including Facebook, Google, MTV and AOL, to name just a few.
The campaign highlights the power of viral campaigning – a modern phenomenon which has the potential to make your message go global - reaching millions of people, delivering increased brand exposure, new data, more clients and a partridge in a pear tree!