John Lai is the Malaysian born, Auckland bred, founder of Social Media NZ. Social Media NZ is an influential digital and tech information hub. John is passionate about business and technology. John is also involved in a startup in Palo Alto, California called Chattrspace. He's also a big sports fan and die hard Liverpool FC supporter.
You can check out John's blog here and the latest digital and tech news on Social Media NZ's site.
Read what John's pick (well picks) were for 2011 and leave a comment for a chance to win a pair of Puma hi-tops!
Best of 2011
Nicole: What was your favourite New Zealand campaign of 2011?
John: Alright! First off I can’t choose between two, so I will have to have two choices:
- Air New Zealand’s Rico
- The NZTA’s Legend aka Ghost Chips
Nicole: So what made these two campaign your favourites?
John: Well, let’s start with Air New Zealand’s Rico... before people go and criticise the little critter I must say it needed to do what it’s intention was to make New Zealand appeal specifically to the American market. So one could argue that the marketing campaign knew it’s market and the American entertainment culture, where cheesy factor and borderline comedy is accepted.
Just recently Air New Zealand and the world said their goodbyes to Rico as the character was murdered! Air New Zealand teamed up with the board game conglomerate Hasbro to implement the popular crime solving game Cluedo allowing people to solve Rico’s murder for a chance to win a trip to Los Angeles.
The campaign definitely challenged the ‘PC’ culture New Zealand is known for and the campaign had its critics and likers. As someone who likes to see the status quo being challenged it, I found the campaign very interesting. And let’s be honest - how awesome if your HR policy included a game if a staff was fired or left the company!?!
Rico's murderer busted!
Nicole: After letting people solve Rico's murder through a digital version of Cluedo, the murderer was recently revealed in the confession video below - an engaging, and suitably dramatic, way of closing a campaign!
Now onto the NZTA’s Legend ad. Who would have guessed that giving away ghost chips could save lives right?
The NZ Transport Agency’s campaign targeted the right demographic and not only that it created an internet meme, the video as it stands right now has over 1,400,000 YouTube hits.
One could argue drink and driving is no laughing matter, but the ad used a fresh perspective from the usual brutal look at what the outcome is when one drinks and drives.
The question that I am sure everyone is still asking is....does it saves life? Does it return the right ROI?
I personally think the message had more of an impact due to the fact of how the message have been repurposed on social platforms and while still sharing the “don’t drink and drive” message.
The NZTA's Legend was also chosen by another 12 Days of Advertising contributor Julie Roulston of NZ Fashion Week - you can read her thoughts on the campaign here.
Trends for 2012 Nicole: What do you think we'll see more of in 2012?
John: Next year we will see less social networks and more local networks. This means more interests centric groups will pop up more beat example of this if you look at a new startup call letterboxd. This where movie buffs come to together to talk all things movie related. This is just one example but we will see more of these sort of social networks that concentrates on quality over quantity.
Next year we will see more social media integration into TV. This year in New Zealand we saw channels like U live, TV3, TV1 integrate interactive elements within their programs to get the audience engage but it’s still most using Facebook as a medium. In 2012 we will see these channels explore further and being more creative in ways of using other networks like Twitter, Youtube and etc.
Nicole: What do you think (or hope) to see less of in 2012?
John: I hope to see more brands being smart and knowing your company first and whether social media is a good fit or not. Don’t be on social media for the sake of being on it!
Have you engaged with a TV show through social media this year?