2016 had no shortage of buzz-worthy social media campaigns. And what did all these campaigns have in common? Creativity. From taking advantage of the latest trends, encouraging audience participation, or just simply thinking outside the box, the most memorable campaigns of the year came from brands that weren’t afraid to try something new and get imaginative. 2016 might be coming to an end, but we’re sure not going to forget these three brands anytime soon.
Buzzfeed’s Tasty Videos
If there’s one company killing the video content game this year, it’s Buzzfeed Tasty. These quick clips simplify the cooking process, with mouthwatering recipes that are as much fun to watch as they are to eat. And sure, cooking tutorials have been popular on YouTube for years. But Buzzfeed took this idea and ran in a slightly different direction, one that is simple, short, and incredibly successful. Tasty’s videos take something that can be seen as intimidating, like cooking, and make it looks easy. By cutting out the talking and prep work, these short clips give users exactly what they want to see in a fraction of the time. When content is easy to digest, users are more likely to engage. Case in point: In September alone, Tasty generated approximately 1.8 billion (yes, billion!) video views, with 1.6 billion of those views coming from Facebook alone.
Disney partnered with the Make-A-Wish Foundation to invite users to share images of Mickey Mouse Ears on Twitter and Instagram using the hashtag #ShareYourEars. In return, Disney promised to donate $5 to the Make-A-Wish Foundation for every post, with a cap of $1 million. It didn’t take long for the hashtag to become a trending topic. The campaign so far exceeded engagement expectations that Disney ended up doubling its original promise, donating $2 million to Make-A-Wish. By encouraging audience participation, Disney was able to raise awareness for a worthy cause, gain a variety of user generated content, and make its audience members feel like a part of the Disney brand.
Reynolds Wrap’s Endless Instagram Table
You don’t need an exciting product to run an exciting campaign – just look at Reynolds Wrap. The company knows users aren’t going to be rushing to Instagram to see foil, so they took a different approach to garner engagement. Rather than highlighting its products, it created something that would be of more interest to users – the endless recipe table. The company turned its Instagram feed into one endless table, strategically stringing images of food together and organizing the recipes by season. It was a creative (and successful!) approach to an otherwise boring product. And it’s easy to see the connection between content and product, even if the product isn’t explicitly mentioned.