Ever since Oreo tweeted that clever “You can still dunk in the dark” tweet during the Super Bowl power outage, brands have been looking at ways to capitalize on current news stories in social media. Most of them have failed, some miserably.
Real time marketing is apparently a tactic that includes a high level of risk.
Clever video from the 2014 World Cup by Stabilo
Sometimes though, organizations do manage link their brands to breaking stories in a positive way, like with this brilliant video from Schwan-STABILO, the German manufacturer of for example Stabilo Boss highlighter pens.
During the already classic 2014 FIFA World Cup game between reigning champions Spain and the Netherlands, Dutch forward Robin van Persie scored a wonderful diving header to level the score 1-1. The Netherlands turned the game around and beat Spain 5-1 in spectacular manner.
Stabilo immortalized the flying dutchman’s goal be recreating it in a flipbook video made with Stabilo pens. Very clever:
I blogged the other day about how a “viral agency” had been posting nice reviews in Swedish online forums on behalf of Samsung, but without disclosing their true identity. The scam was revealed and in a comment to the marketing blog Adland, Samsung said that the procedure was out of line and that they had put an end to it.
“The user who started the thread wanted to share a video showing the “12 Mega Pixel quality that creates a clear and fine video” of a Samsung camera – which is fair enough, perhaps. But then check his previous posts: here, here and here. It’s fair to say that he’s very interested in Samsung products and nothing else.”
The IP address to the user “Huey” comes from Seoul, South Korea. Tom Royal is pointing out that the IP addresses are not directly associated with Samsung. But we are starting to see a pattern here. I did some further investigation and found that the video that was linked to in the Computeractive forum has also been posted on a number of Korean forums, as well as this UK forum. The text in this post is the exact same as the text on Computeractive:
“This is a short sample video that is recorded by a new Samsung camcorder R10. Although the environment of aquarium was not proper enough to shoot by a camcorder, R10 did capture every single movement of beautiful sea animals in a dark aquarium. It has a 12 Mega Pixel quality that creates a clear and fine video.”
Other places with the same text and video are here, here and here.
I realize that it is possible that Samsung has nothing to do with the spreading of this video, it may just be enthusiastic fans or spam sites that scrape content online. But it is starting to look a bit suspiciuos don’t you think? Tom Royal has tried to get a comment from Samsung and promised to post if he gets a response. We will continue to follow this story as it unveils.
Samsung has been caught with their pants down in an attempt to create a buzz in Swedish online forums for their LED tv sets. A Swedish agency called the Viral Company has been posting comments and questions to numerous forums about the best LED tvs, pretending to be an ordinary consumer. With fake identities the Viral Company tried to get the word going in forums about gaming, movies, home electronics, outdoor life and so forth.
But they did a major mistake when they added a smiley to the posts with the purpose of tracking conversations, since the URL for the smiley icon went to a domain name owned by the Viral Company (http://power.moltoman.com). So the little scam was brutally revealed, and here is the fun part – someone else is following in the footsteps of the Viral Company, calling them out as cheaters. A user named “Felmeddelande” (Error message, in English) posts comments to the different forum threads explaining that these posts are done on behalf of Samsung, which in most cases are in breach of forum rules.
If you do a Google search for http://power.moltoman.com/tracker/PMfegnEb/smile.gif (the image has now been taken down) or http://power.moltoman.com/tracker/ you get a long list of forum posts, almost all about LED tvs. The question now is, how much of these tactics did Samsung Sweden know about. If the campaign has been approved by Samsung then they are in desperate need of some rethinking in terms of social media strategy, because this campaign was doomed to backfire from the very start. It will also be interesting to see how they will handle this online crisis situation. Will they stay silent or will they address the issue?
Volkswagen turns to social media when promoting new cars. In a recent Advertising Age article, Volkswagen of America says it is launching the next generation GTI exclusively on an iPhone app, because it is a cost-efficient marketing tool. Compare that with the $60 million Volkswagen spent on TV commercials on the 2006 launch of GTI.
And in Sweden, Volkswagen has produced three videos that have gone viral, to the extent that one of them has become the most viral video ever made (even more viral than Susan Boyle, thank God), at least according to the Viral Video Chart. “Pianotrappan” (the piano stairs) has been viewed almost 7 million times in less than a month, but what makes it the most viral video is the number of blog posts and tweets about the video (3,100 blog posts and 12,800 tweets). Well done Volkswagen and DDB.