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156 posts categorized "Consumer Generated Media"

Monday, December 20, 2010

5 Crowdsourced Consumer Trends To Watch In 2011

IMB_BrooklynFareCups Almost anyone you meet in marketing will usually be a fan of getting their data and insights about major trends in consumer behaviour from research reports. After all, we generally pay a lot of money for them, and (ironically) many of the most authoritative are BRANDED either by a research organization, or by an authoritative institution such as a renowned business school. To some degree, this is valuable and much needed ... since anyone can publish the results of any unscientific poll or survey done hastily on Twitter and more weight to the "data" produced than they should. Yet you don't need an MBA in analytics to have a voice in spotting hot trends.

IMB_TrendHunterLogo For those of you who actively read and digest information about the world around you - Trendhunter.com has a home for your thoughts. Whether you happen to write your own blog or prefer to remain a participant instead of a creator, the site has built a platform for what they call "Crowdsourced Consumer Insight." Last week they released a sneak peek at their 2011 Trend Report which takes individual examples of interesting trends and applies a filter to identify some top level trends that they may point towards. 

The team at TrendHunter was kind enough to share an exclusive link to a sample of the report with the TOP 20 TRENDS and lots of great insights for FREE and you can get the 35 page report right here.

As I read it this weekend, there were a few trends in particular that caught my eye and will definitely be useful for me in the coming months as I help several of our clients with building and executing their own marketing strategies for 2011. Here are a few standouts:

  1. Charitable Deviance. As I read this report about how charitable organizations are using more attention grabbing methods to capture attention, I thought of the recent Digital Death campaign that I profiled on this blog. Getting people to pay attention to world changing ideas is (and has always been) a marketing challenge. Finding a solution to these challenges through creativity is something every marketer should find some time in the new year to participate in ... even if it lands outside of your day job.
  2. Brand Reversion. I have a live example of this in my own home, as my six year old son has become a huge fan of He-man - an animated series that was popular when I was a kid in the late 80s. This larger trend is about the return of the old, in many categories from fashion to art. Nostalgia will always be a part of us, but as social tools allow us to reconnect with our pasts in ways such as rediscovering lost grade school friends and purchasing those toys we used to play with on eBay - this trend will only continue to rise. Super Mario Brothers anyone?
  3. Next Besting. One of the more brilliant terms to come out of TrendHunter back in 2008 was this term which described the consumer behaviour of finding slightly cheaper, but still good alternatives. Being number 1, in this world, can be a big liability because consumers may be more willing to trade down for your next best competitor. I agree with the report's assessment that this trend is on the rise again and will likely show no signs of slowing down in 2011.
  4. Democratic Selling. A term that they assign to the process of consumers voting for products to get made - I think this trend speaks to something that is even larger, beyond selling to donations, or content creation, or even advertising. Consumer creation or co-creation as it is often called is extending into unexpected areas and I think we will continue to be surprised each time it creeps into a new area of the world we didn't expect.
  5. Discreet Consumerism. I have a theory about this particular one in the sample report, and why it is placed last. If you happen to work in marketing, you will probably have the same reaction I had right after you read this trend ... that you need to get the rest of the report. Discreet Consumerism speaks to the idea that there may be a backlash growing against brands and our overly branded world. This is something I have been thinking about for some time as well, and the reason for this rebellion comes down to distrust. The challenge for marketing is how to regain that trust without relying to gimmicks or luck to do it.

To download the full 35 page PDF sample report, use this exclusive link for Influential Marketing Blog Readers. Also, stay tuned as the rest of this week I will be exploring a few other interesting trends not included on that report which I think will be worth watching in 2011.

Monday, November 08, 2010

How A Curated Competition Helped Find A New Logo For DC

IMB_DCLoveTShirt1 If you come to Washington DC as a tourist at any time of year, chances are you will spend at least a part of your trip visiting some of the most iconic museums and national buildings in the city. Outside of most of them are a collection of street vendors selling an assortment of life-sized cardboard cutouts of Obama and tacky shot glasses with the Presidential Seal on them.

One of their best selling icons is a t-shirt which is a simple copy of New York's well known logo - "I Love New York" - with the city name replaced. It is just one symbol of what I have seen spending most of my childhood growing up in DC area: that it can be a difficult city to adopt as your own. Many people live in neighboring Maryland or Virginia, the vibe of the city can shift based on who gains political power and there has always been a large expat population working 2-5 year stints at NGOs or embassies locally.

IMB_DCLoveTShirt3

Back in August of this year, at the start of the Fall tourism season for Washington DC, two young D.C.-based artists Brandon Bloch and Justin Young thought the city needed a stronger identity, and felt that the solution to this challenge could be design based. So they invited their design friends to participate in a "curated competition" to create a logo that could better represent the city.

IMB_DCLoveTShirt4 The competition resulted in several designs, and the winner was a designer named Alex Slater who had a simple but elegant design that felt uniquely right for DC. They have been sharing this logo at local events throughout the fall and have been featured in media both locally and nationally. While many of these "crowdsourced logo competitions" awaken the ire of designers for their focus on getting design thinking for free ... the DC Love Project was different because it was a curated competition. All the designs were shown at a public event and the voting element offered a real time feedback method to help select one design to focus on promoting.

This campaign certainly helped to start defining a logo identity for the city that all of us locals would love to see ... but the bigger idea to take away is that sometimes crowdsourcing misses the chance to really value every contribution you get - a curated competition might inspire much more passion among those who participate, as well as those who will see the final result.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

What USA Network Knows About Branding That MTV Doesn't

IMB_MTVNewLogo1 The day that Michael Jackson died, I turned to MTV for the first time in several years. Like others in the so-called MTV Generation sandwiched between the youngest of Generation X and the oldestof Generation Y, I remembered growing up in the 80s with the battle cry of "I want my MTV!" On that day, however, I was greeted not with news coverage about Michael Jackson's death - but with a reality TV series about teen pregnancies. Confused, I shared in a tweet what many of my generation had felt for years:

"MTV is officially irrelevant. Michael Jackson just died and they are airing 16 and Pregnant."

IMB_TBSLogo In a time where services like VEVO are taking the role of offering 24 hour music video on demand, MTV has certainly had to reinvent itself. Others have written about how the brand has evolved (changing to a newly transparent logo) - but in that evolution the connection to the music has been almost completely lost. MTV is not about music anymore and this is a disregard for brand heritage that we see often in the world of television and entertainment. TBS was once a "superstation" offering all kinds of programming and sports and now is trying to focus on comedy and being "very funny." The Food Network, dealing with its own growing pains will be launching launched a cooking channel to separate the how-to cooking style programming from other food related programming. You could be forgiven for thinking that having a consistent brand really doesn't matter much in the world of entertainment.

Today the USA Network is launching a group contributed blog tied directly to the network's overall brand positioning focused on celebrating characters of all types. This blog, called Character Approved is featuring 10 voices in a variety of categories from Art to Food and I have been invited to write the Technology/New Media category.*

IMB_CharacterApprovedBlog1

While the blogging project focuses on sharing stories of individuals, products and organizations that are having a positive impact on American culture - the marketing lesson worth repeating from this is how it is the latest effort in a branding campaign that essentially started more than 5 years ago where the USA Network created a vision for their brand that still exists and drives the brand today.

IMB_CharacterApprovedAward1 The tagline of "Characters Welcome" that you may have seen on the cable channel guides the programming decisions and recently has taken form outside of the network through programs such as the Character Approved awards and now this new blog. What I love about this guiding principle is that it allows the network to stand for something and extend beyond just the current programming of the moment. As of now, the strategy seems to be working - with USA currently placed as the #1 network in all of basic cable, with its programming being seen in 98.5 million U.S. homes. For me, focusing on sharing the stories of characters that are having an impact on the culture of America through technology and new media is a powerful idea and one that I am very excited about exploring and writing about over the coming year. Check out some of the initial posts now live on the blog and let me and the rest of the writers on this project know what you think!

*Disclaimer - I am compensated for my participation on the Character Approved blog as a contributing writer, however this and any future posts about the USA Network that I share on my blog are not compensated or scripted in any way and represent my own true opinion.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Why The "Old Spice Guy" Might Be The Perfect Branding Campaign

You might have seen a randomly bare chested and very good looking guy doing a bunch of short videos that look suspiciously like a funny commercial that has been on TV for months for Old Spice. Starting from a series of ads, over the last 48 hours the advertising team for Old Spice has created more than 200 short ads which are essentially video responses from the actor in the ads to comments and questions posted on Twitter. The real time nature of these videos has become huge online, driving millions of views of essentially what are branded ads and spreading the creative of the TV spots to a much wider audience online.



It is a good idea and the creative is funny, but there are several things that make this campaign stand out as a way to refresh the tired and sagging Old Spice brand. They come down to the basics of good marketing - from strategy to creative, but most importantly, the level of integration between television, online and social media in this campaign stands out. Unlike many other consumer goods campaigns that fall short when it comes to everyone collaborating, this is one of those few campaigns that seems like it was actually approached holistically by one team that didn't just chase the trend of the month, but used the platforms of TV, Twitter and YouTube primarily in the ways they were best suited. Here's a short summary with some key marketing lessons I will be taking away from this effort:
  • Smart Strategy - The marketing strategy behind this campaign is simple - show a great looking guy and tell women that he is "the man their man could smell like." Everyone knows that when it comes to bath products for guys, a huge purchaser is likely women - so instead of turning women into sex objects as Axe does to reach the single guys, Old Spice set their target as including and even speaking directly to women.
  • Creative Execution - The creative execution of the "Old Spice Man" using actor Isaiah Mustafa has been a hit, from his funny rapid paced TV spots and offered an instantly memorable pitch for Old Spice that people remembered and even mimicked. The campaign started with a strong creative execution that spoke directly to mostly women and while many men didn't quite "get" the commercial initially, it was all many women could talk about.
  • Cross Media Integration - Moving from a TV spot, the team at W&K behind this integrated social media in a way that is often lacking. Even with brands that have significant followings through one type of social media (such as Champion with over 100,000 Facebook fans and a great current campaign all around sportsmanship) are falling flat when it comes to translating that audience to a different platform and type of conversation (their Twitter page has only 45 members). For Old Spice, they are responding to tweets directly through videos, letting people create their own versions of the ad, engaging on Facebook and it is all paying off. As of the time of writing this post, their YouTube channel has nearly 7 million views, nearly 600,000 fans on Facebook and more than 70,000 followers on Twitter.
  • Personal Investment - This is a relatively intangible piece, but the advertising agency team behind this is clearly personally invested in the campaign. They love it, and are actively sharing their excitement about it. On the Interactive Creative Director Ian Tait's blog are photos of the line of employees waiting to meet the Old Spice Man and also a personal response to a negative tweet someone shared and more details about the team behind the campaign. While most consumers won't see this dialogue or probably even care, I happen to know as a fellow agency guy that when the team working on a project loves it - it comes through in the campaign.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

5 Types Of Consumer Generated Marketing (CGM) Campaigns

IMB_TimeMagCover Over the past several years, consumer generated marketing campaigns have become more and more popular. After all, what brand wouldn't want tons of users to create content on their behalf and share it online with their entire social networks? And by the way, these consumers will create it all for free. For this reason, CGM was often heralded as a dream come true type of situation for brands and even a way to supplant their marketing agencies and get their advertising created for free.

As time went on, though, brands realized the downside of consumer generated media could be a lack of control and potential risk for their brand if the content isn't great. That added to the fact that while consumer generated media was the shiny new object that everyone wanted, it wasn't always the best choice in terms of a creative strategy or execution to get people involved. So when is a consumer generated marketing strategy the right choice for your brand?  To find the answer, you need to first understand that there are several different types of consumer generated media campaigns and picking the right one will have a lot to do with your future success or failure. Here are the five types that I have seen online as well as examples of each one:

1. Reinvent a branded asset. "What's Your Version Of ....?"

If your brand has been around for some time, you have likely built up some equity and recognition in the elements of your brand. One of the best ways to involve the online population of content creators in your brand is to ask them for help in reimagining something intrinsic to your brand. Folgers did this recently by asking consumers to re-record the famous theme song - "the best part of wakin up, is Folgers in your cup." The resulting finalists were great examples of talented individuals making the brand their own and also helped to remind anyone who watched any of these finalists just how much a part of their own past Folgers might have been.

IMB_FolgersJingleContest

2. Find your dream job. "What If You Were ... ?"

All of us might imagine ourselves reinvented, but the fact of social media is that it can offer many great tools to help you think about the process of being what you want to be. There are a growing number of campaigns that fit the mold of helping you to envision yourself as doing something different, with the most popular likely being Queensland Tourism's Best Job In The World campaign which invited you to pitch yourself as the new Tourism director for a small island in Australia. Another example is MTV's search happening now for the World's First "TJ" or Twitter Jockey. Contest elements there included creating your own hashtag and publicizing it.

IMB_MTV_TJSearch

3. Get rewarded for your creativity. "Submit your creative idea for ..."

This may be the most popular form of consumer generated media campaign, where you invite participants to submit videos or photos or stories and reward them based on their creativity. The rewards typically focus on visibility and promotion versus prizes or cash - case in point would be Doritos efforts around the Super Bowl for the last several years where they aired a consumer generated TV commercial during the Super Bowl.

IMB_super-bowl-doritos-ad

4. Share your story, win a prize. "Tell us ... - and you could win!"

A format that works for just about any brand, this is a combination of a promotional campaign and something that engages consumers by getting them to share something personal in return for the opportunity to win a prize. An example of this type of campaign is one that Bertolli* recently launched on Facebook to get consumers to share what inspires them.

IMB_Bertolli_WhatInspiresYou1

5. Share your idea to get a grant. "Get funded to change the world."

In a nice intersection between social good and marketing, there are a growing number of sites that allow you to submit your idea for how to make an impact on the world and get funded. Some are like the Pepsi Refresh project which cross into the realm of philanthropy while others are more focused on connected those in need with those who would fund or vote for them such as the American Express Members Project or DonorsChoose.org.

IMB_PepsiRefreshProject

Are there any other types of consumer generated media marketing campaigns that you have seen which fit another category? Share them in a comment and I will amend this list.

*Note - Bertolli is a client of Ogilvy 360 Digital Influence.

Monday, March 08, 2010

How To Take A Journey Instead Of A Trip

IMB_slide_projector_9x9j I used to hate slideshows. Not Powerpoint as many people call slideshows today, but the old style of slideshow. The one where you set up a carousel projector to show lots of little negatives encased in small cardboard frames to unwilling family and friends. If you are under a certain age, you probably won't know what I'm talking about - but that moment of having to sit through someone's vacation photos with the narration of "and this is us in front of the <insert random place name here>" is unfortunately familiar. The problem isn't that the trip itself was boring, or that you're a cold unfeeling person because you struggle to sit through the shared holiday experience of someone you usually care about. The real problem is that the way the story was told left much to be desired. A trip is something no one cares about except the people who took it.

IMB_80Trains1 A journey, on the other hand is more significant. It is something that invites you to take part. Something that has a destination or vision in mind for where someone is headed or what they are trying to do. A journey is a story that matters. This was my thought when I came across Monisha and Harald's journey. They are travelling across India on 80 trains in 3 months and are in the midst of their journey right now. As their site describes,the chaotically efficient Indian railway system is "the largest civilian employer in the world, featuring luxury trains, toy trains, a hospital on wheels, the steepest, the slowest, and the second longest train journeys in the world." Chances are, you're already intrigued by their journey as I was when I first read about it. 

Yet, I don't actually know Monisha or Harald. They aren't personal contacts of mine, and though I might hear back from them if they read this - it is not necessarily about having a personal connection. You might watch a slide show from a family member who you love and find it difficult to get involved in their story, yet reading Monish and Harald's journey is interesting. You can follow them in real time on Twitter at @80trains and share it with others. That is the power of having a journey - it lets others get involved. How many travel brands could inspire this kind of content? Or what about small businesses sharing the story of the evolution of their business? When someone cares about the outcome of any story, they are more likely to try to help and be part of it. So what journey are you taking?

IMB_80Trains2

Credit: Thanks to Arun Rajagopal for sharing this link to the 80 Trains Project.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Consumer Reports & Consumerist Help Shoppers Bite Back

IMB_ConsumerReportsAd One of the most visible effects of the social media revolution is the relative power that is now in the hands of an individual consumer when it comes to spreading a positive or negative experience with your brand to hundreds, thousands, and even millions of people. Shoppers have a voice and it is now far stronger than the occasional review on Amazon or comment on a blog post. As the new holiday shopping season descends in the US, at least one organization is starting the season with an open call to consumers to make their voices heard.

Today Consumer Reports placed a full page ad in the USA Today asking holiday shoppers to "bite back" against retail practices that they hate. In an announcement about the campaign, the Consumer Reports team shared the following stats from a survey run on the Consumerist (a popular blog that is now part of the "Consumer Reports family") about what consumers dislike the MOST:
  • 72% Stores that never open all of the checkout lanes
  • 68% Fake "sales". If something is always 20% off, it's not on sale
  • 67% Coupons that exclude almost everything in the store
  • 52% Pushing store credit cards at the register
As we head into this holiday season, watching out for your shoppers biting back isn't just a lesson for those of us who work in retail sales. Consumer opinion will continue to drive purchase, and this will take the form of everything from idle tweets to wall posts on a fan page. Listening to conversations about your brand, products and industry and participating in the conversation is consistent advice from those who "get" social media. This holiday season for many brands, it may be even more than good advice ... it may be a necessary survival tactic.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Manifesto For The Content Curator: The Next Big Social Media Job Of The Future ?

Every hour thousands of new videos are uploaded online. Blog posts are written and published. Millions of tweets and other short messages are shared. To say there is a flood of content being created online now seems like a serious understatement. Until now, the interesting thing is that there are relatively few technologies or tools that have been adopted in a widespread way to manage this deluge. We pretty much just have algorithmic search, with Google (and other search engines) as the most obvious example. Social bookmarking and social news have been around for some time (ie - sites like Digg or delicious), and new models of aggregation like Alltop are springing up to help us navigate all this content as well.

The real question is whether solutions like these will be enough. By some estimates in just a few years we will reach a point where all the information on the Internet will double every 72 hours. Double. I'm running out of metaphors to describe the magnitude of this content creation. The predictable result of this is that brands are beginning to focus on content creation when they start to look at social media. What are we going to create, or what are we going to get our customers/patients/fans/audience/victims to create? Is that really the best question we could be asking?

What if you were to ask about the person that makes sense of it all? The one who sifts through all the content and picks out the best and most worthy. This person is missing from most corporate communications teams. It's not a commonly defined role on any ebusiness teams. In fact, there are few jobs like this at all. The closest comparative role may be contained within the rising Library 2.0 movement (one I wrote about some time ago), but this is not frequently linked to business communication or marketing. If this role did exist, what would it be called?

The name I would give it is Content Curator. A Content Curator is someone who continually finds, groups, organizes and shares the best and most relevant content on a specific issue online. The most important component of this job is the word "continually." In the real time world of the Internet, this is critical. If you look at how many individuals are currently using their Twitter account to highlight interesting bits of content they locate or how del.icio.us users have tagged and shared content on that site for years, you'll understand that this idea has been steadily growing organically.

In an attempt to offer more of a vision for someone who might fill this role, here is my crack at a short manifesto for someone who might take on this job:

MANIFESTO/JOB DESCRIPTION: CONTENT CURATOR

In the near future, experts predict that content on the web will double every 72 hours. The detached analysis of an algorithm will no longer be enough to find what we are looking for. To satisfy the people's hunger for great content on any topic imaginable, there will need to be a new category of individual working online. Someone whose job it is not to create more content, but to make sense of all the content that others are creating. To find the best and most relevant content and bring it forward. The people who choose to take on this role will be known as Content Curators. The future of the social web will be driven by these Content Curators, who take it upon themselves to collect and share the best content online for others to consume and take on the role of citizen editors, publishing highly valuable compilations of content created by others. In time, these curators will bring more utility and order to the social web. In doing so, they will help to add a voice and point of view to organizations and companies that can connect them with customers - creating an entirely new dialogue based on valued content rather than just brand created marketing messages.

After writing this, I can't help but wonder if there might already be people out there with this title. Let's find out: the first person to send me a scan or photo of a business card with this title on it will get a free signed copy of Personality Not Included ... (UPDATE 04/14/11 - This competition is now over!)

Interested in hearing more about content curation?  Click here to learn how to book Rohit to speak at your next event.

Additional Posts About Content Curation:


Thursday, August 20, 2009

Palm Pre Misses Opportunity With Bollywood Hero Sponsorship

IMB_BollywoodHero2 Earlier this month, the IFC channel launched a new three part mini-series called Bollywood Hero that featured the story of an American actor (Chris Kattan) who decides to leave Hollywood for Bollywood to become a leading man. The show aired in early August and has been replaying on the channel since then. I found it entertaining and highly recommend it, but I doubt you're reading this blog to get my review of a TV mini-series ... so let's talk about the marketing.

The first thing any marketer would notice is that the show seemed to have two main sponsors - Palm (focused on promoting their new Pre) and esurance.com:

IMB_BollywoodHeroHomepage

What was most interesting about these sponsors, however, was not that they both chose to support the program (which I think is great), but in how they chose to "activate" their sponsorships. Palm placed banner ads and logos on the website for the film that pointed to a branded page all about the Palm Pre. No mention of Bollywood, the campaign or anything related to the film. Esurance.com, on the other hand, chose to put together a full campaign called "Bollywood Casting Call" that invited lovers of Bollywood dance to submit their videos for a chance to win the "prize" of being animated to dance in an animated promo for the brand with their cartoon spokesperson Erin Esurance:

IMB_BollywoodHero_esurance2

Anyone who has seen a Bollywood film (or even a farce about one) knows that a good part of the film is about the dancing. Picking up on that, esurance.com invited people to participant in the fun and offered an outlet to become a part of their campaign. Though the tie to the film could have been stronger, the campaign generated 54 video entries and over 25,000 video views - over what seems to be a relatively short duration of a few weeks. More importantly, esurance.com now has several branded videos online to use as marketing assets, and will soon have one more when they create the animated prize video featuring the winning video.

Palm on the other hand may realize some brand awareness and positive brand association for choosing to sponsor an independent production such as this, but leaves much of their opportunity on the table by not choosing to integrate the campaign more into their overall efforts. What could they have done? Exclusive content on the Pre to drive trial and maybe even purchase, giving product to the winners of the dance contest, or even creating a demo of the product where you could watch a trailer of the film on the Pre would all have been ways to further engage the audience with their product and get more out of their sponsorship.

One final yet simple idea: imagine if Palm just did more to support of one of the best marketing tactics for the film itself ... a flash mob dance in Times Square (video below) that has already generated almost 200,000 views. Sometimes it's not enough to put up the money to simply sponsor or underwrite something - to really get the value from it you need to take a more integrated approach.

Monday, July 13, 2009

6 Lessons From the Best Marketing Campaign Ever

Last month an unlikely underdog stunned the marketing world at the International Cannes Advertising Festival. At the show, a single marketing campaign took home a Grand Prix award in three categories simultaneously--direct, cyber and PR-- something that had never happened before in the 50+ year history of the show. Contrary to what you might expect, the unanimous winner of this unprecedented victory was not a Fortune50 brand with an advertising budget of millions, but a small Tourism board promoting a little known island off the Great Barrier Reef.

best job

The winning campaign was called the "Best Job in the World" and was essentially a big online job search conducted through social media for a new "caretaker" for Hamilton Island in Queensland, Australia. Done on a comparatively paltry marketing budget of just $1.7 million dollars and reliant on fortuitous PR and word of mouth, the campaign achieved stunning results, including over 34,000 video entries from applicants in 200 countries, and more than 7 million visitors to the site who generated nearly 500,000 votes.

ben southallJust two weeks ago on July 1, the winner of the competition--a 34-year-old British man named Ben Southall started blogging and touring around Queensland, finally bringing the competition to a close. For the next six months, he will be touring around Queensland, sharing his adventures through a video blog, writing, Twitter account and Flickr photos-- generating even more interest in Hamilton Island and all of Queensland in the process. The tangible results for the island are rolling in as well: Amway Australia chose it as the site of their upcoming annual conference, and domestic Aussie airline Virgin Blue just started flying a direct flight between Sydney and Hamilton Island, due to the rise in demand from travelers wanting to get to the island.

I realize that tourism and the travel industry may seem far removed from your business. Unfortunately, we don't all have the natural beauty of Hamilton Island to fall back on when starting our marketing campaigns. Still, a big part of the reason for the amazing success of this campaign was not what they were marketing, but how they used social media to do it. In that, there are some lessons anyone trying to promote a product or service could use:

  1. Make it believable. Many marketing groups would never make a claim if they can't provide substantial evidence. How might Tourism Queensland prove that their job is the best in the world? They can't. But it is believable because it is a beautiful place and fits what many people's definition of a dream job might be.
  2. It's not about how much you spend. One of the major benefits of smart public relations and social media is that it scales in a way that advertising typically doesn't. In other words, you don't have to pay more to get more. The real trick is to have something worthwhile to say that people can't help talking about. You need a good story.
  3. Focus on content, not traffic. The typical marketing campaign focuses on traffic to some kind of site. For Tourism Queensland, the biggest payoff of this campaign was having over 34,000 videos on YouTube from people around the world talking about how much they love Queensland. Aggregate the views of all those videos, and multiply them over the long term and you'll start to understand the true impact of their campaign.
  4. Create an inherent reason for people to share. Another element of this campaign that worked extremely well was the fact that there was voting enabled on the videos. What this meant was that after someone submitted their video, they had an incentive to share it with everyone in their social network online to try and get more votes.
  5. Don't underestimate the power of content creators Most recent statistics point to some number between 1% and 10% of the user base of any social network are the active content creators. Though these percentages may seem small, the potential impact of some of these individuals are vast online. It could easily become the secret weapon for your next marketing campaign.
  6. Give your promotion a shelf life. The best thing about this campaign may just be the content yet to come. Ben, the winner, just started blogging and sharing videos and photos, but the content is already engaging, high quality and inspires you to dream of making it to Queensland yourself. Over the next six months, his itinerary will take him across the state of Queensland and unlock many other unique opportunities. Best of all, this content will live on far beyond the time span of the campaign.

NOTE: This entry is republished from my guest blog post on FastCompany.com today.