Day Seven: Jen Corbett
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Our seventh guest contributor for 12 Days of Advertising is Jen Corbett. Jen grew up in Sunny Gisborne and Havelock North but went on to study Media and English Literature at Victoria University in Wellington.
After University, she moved to Auckland to work at boutique design agency before deciding to get into ads. She was accepted into the Axis Adschool at Media Design School and shortly afterwards landed a place at DraftFCB. After that, she scooped up the dream job of Social Media Specialist at GrabOne in 2010, and is now off to help implement social media for the New Zealand Fashion Festival (Feb 24th to March 4th 2012). She's also about to get married to longtime partner Justin Flitter and is supporting the development of their new marketing startup Flitter.
Outside of social media and setting up her new blog ideas before breakfast she loves good New Zealand wine, fashion, food & exploring a passion for photography and dreaming about all the far-off places she will one day get a chance to travel to.
Jen's extensive background in social media strategies means she has some great insights for marketers in 2012, and her pick for 2011 is a brand that successfully pulled off an integrated TV and social media campaign that was engaging and supported the brand personality perfectly.
There are a few that stand out to me but my favourite has to be Whittaker's Swear by the Slab campaign. They hadn’t done anything for the Slab 10 years before this one. They’ve crossed the lines between traditional and social in this the right way without losing any of the qualities that define the brand. They combined a hugely entertaining television campaign that people talked about. And they combined it with executed a brilliant social media execution - launching a Facebook page complete with witty status updates, carrying on the “Good honest Chocolate” story with the community and even giving them the chance to contribute their own scripts - some of which they even went on to make.
Montage of 'Swear by the Slab' TV Ads
Jen: I love how they successfully maintain a 360 degree consistency in their share of voice both online and off.
And just as the humanness of the Peanut Slab creative makes it memorable in traditional mediums - it’s also what makes it effective on social. The insightfulness about it is based on a purely social observation. This enhances and opens up the community for conversation. The ads are enjoyed so much when they’re on TV people go on youtube to re-watch them. In effect they’ve tied a community of Peanut Slab lovers together for the long term - giving them a place to share and continue this on facebook - without being irritating, intrusive or annoying.
Nicole: Some ways community interaction is being continued beyond the initial 'Swear by the Slab' promotion through the Peanut Slab Facebook page
I think we can learn a lot from the way they’ve used each channels for engagement - enhancing the strengths of every medium to enhance their message without trying too hard. The belief in building a following of brand ambassadors for future campaigns and initiatives.
If there’s anything for us to learn in this is - don’t kid yourself when it comes to the integration of your campaign. Whatever the medium or the market - keep it honest.
Trends for 2012
Nicole: What do you expect to see more of in 2012?
Jen: As we’ve seen overseas, I think there will be more marketing and advertising ideas and stories co-created (or co-decided upon) by their community before and during campaigns. I’m not talking about crowdsourcing as such - more of a co-operation between brands and the people that like them. Brands that say "ok, so you love us, what do you want from us next?". Brands who aren’t afraid to ask their fans to help create their message.
I also think we’ll see more brands acknowledging the value of investing in and fine tuning engaging, creative and entertaining/informational content over one off campaigns to “win an iPad”. It’s all about working to build an engaged and long-term community of supporters who are more likely to buy and refer your product. They’ll be teaming up with small shops and specialists to help them achieve that in-house.
Giving a group of possible supporters a reason to like you, nurturing that - keeps them coming back and already half lined up to buy your products - or tell their mates to.
More focus on building reliable and socially authentic - everyday brand advocates not just sports celebrities sourced via social networks. The power of social recommendation is still hugely untapped, and I think we’ll see more fostering of connections between fans who are already interested in your product - who act as catalysts for recommendation.
All this tied with a smarter understanding of (increasingly social and mobile) consumer touch points. Some of us are going to start getting really good at this in 2012 - and that’s what’s going to separate the best from the rest.
Nicole: What do you expect (or hope to) see less of in 2012?
If there’s one thing I hate it’s try-hard executions - and campaigns which try hard to be social for the sake of it. I hope to see less:
- Competitions without real engagement such as 'like/follow to win' campaigns
- Requests to like/follow without providing a reason or brand connection
- And brands setting up accounts with the short term - without considering the long term community they are building
I also can’t stand noise. The brands that don’t generate a quality or engaged following or maintain a consistent voice authentic to their brand won’t scale in their return on investment or see any increased engagement for their brand. I’d like to see less brands naively jumping in to their social accounts without a strategy (not to mention understanding things like promotion guidelines and etiquette) Brands recognising that having social media dedicated staff on board to enhance and manage their online presence for the long term is key to future marketing success.
Jen and the team at GrabOne have created a social experience around buying online - are you more likely to buy something online because of your interactions with friends online?
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