The Facebook Studio Awards have recently taken place and the 2014 winners are very inspiring. This forum is a brilliant way of creative leaders to better understand the way that social can be used for both high creativity and high effectiveness. What is incredibly interesting about the winning cases is the breadth of approaches that are being used to spark conversations.
Underlying all the strong campaigns in these Awards is provocation. As we all know, Facebook Brand community numbers are inflated, especially if acquired through paid media. An interesting article detailing this shows that legitimate likes are few and far between (see news report on Facebook Like fraud). In addition, engagement rates are on average pretty low because people simply aren’t all that interested in what a Brand is doing. Therefore, campaigns that break through these two hurdles are truly inspiring.
The degree of provocation is important. One of the Facebook Studio winners leaned into insane decadence in Brazil, a country that is not just a big Facebook market, but also an economically challenged country. As such, celebrating absolute financial recklessness was bound to get people engaged. The campaign was actually created to generate awareness of organ donation. Absolutely genius. Have a look.
Another approach to provocation is to ride on the mishap of another Brand. Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s did exactly that by stirring up conversation around McDonald’s discontinuation of the Angus Burger. The campaign was called “Reclaim Your Angus”. They targeted disgruntled Angus Burger fans to offer up an alternative, all the while sharing its disappointment with McDonald’s. Very smart. Have a look.
Another way to provoke was to challenge the status quo. Femina, an Indian fashion magazine, undermined its own business model by using social media to engage a new generation of readers. How? They asked India’s young fashion conscious women to write and edit their magazine. Have a look.
Wendy’s also sparked controversy when they purposefully mispronounced their new burger so that people on Facebook would correct them and thus help educate the public in the process. Consequently the FB community helped those that may have been hesitant to order the burger due to nervousness about pronunciation, to not be. (see video posted on Facebook here that had the incorrect pronunciation).
A great way to provoke is to break with traditions. National Australian Bank wanted to break down barriers to allow all people to enjoy AFL. Meanwhile, the sport was traditionally only broadcast in English. As a result, they developed a social platform that broadcast games in several different languages. Have a look.
A final approach to provocation is to ignite a person’s competitive spirit. Samsung leveraged this by created the world’s first virtual store line for the release of their new Galaxy S4. They allowed people to experience the same thrill and craziness usually associated with an Apple phone launch virtually, and used people’s social networks to help them “move up the line”. Have a look.
I would suspect that many of the cases that we see in this Awards “show” will be present in the upcoming Cannes festival. For more of the case studies from the Facebook Studio Awards 2014, click here.