How to create an award-winning social media campaign

No matter the scale of your business or the industry you operate in, there is always opportunity to integrate your brand into social media channels. Platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter are breaking new ground with billions of users who enjoy their content and services on a daily basis.

In the sea of posts, events and discussion that take place within their news feeds are common denominators that most laypeople often overlook. A social media campaign doesn’t have to receive official recognition and rewards for being effective in bringing people together.

However, these campaigns are pivotal to the continued rise in popularity of social media and businesses that advertise their products and services through them. With that in mind, let’s take a look at several social media campaigns that can and should be considered “award-winning”. Learning from examples will allow you to craft much more effective and groundbreaking content for your brand’s wellbeing going forward.

Benefits of Social Media Marketing

Before we get into the examples of how to create an award-winning campaign for your brand, let’s take a look at why you should do so in the first place. Remember that each marketing endeavor should only be taken up if it yields benefits for your company, brand awareness or overall industry position.

  • Brand humanization, local and global recognition
  • Customer profiling and market research
  • Audience segmentation and streamlined profile targeting
  • Low-cost exposure and overall high return on investment
  • Increased site traffic and engagement, leading to better SERP positioning
  • Industry partnership and investment opportunities attraction

Share Your Ears (Instagram)

It’s no secret that Disney is one of the most influential media conglomerates in the world. With dozens of animated and live-action movies under their belt as well as the growing list of television networks, Disney is no stranger to creating disruptive influence. One of their latest social media activities used Instagram and hashtags to make ends meet.

“Share Your Ears” started as a photo-sharing campaign which promoted raising funds for children’s charity funds. Over the years, it became an annual trend, one that has brought over 250k pieces of content for Disney’s Instagram page. “Share Your Ears” belongs in the award-winning social media campaign category not only for its ingenuity but also the social impact it created.

Amanda Sparks, marketing specialist and contributor at TopDownWriter had this to say on the topic: “A combination of good cause and brand publicity can lead to effective company positioning on the market. Whether through social media or traditional marketing outlets, public wellbeing should always be advertised as the main “selling point” of a marketing campaign.”

While not every brand has a Mickey in its stables, it’s easy enough to come up with a catchy hashtag and start a similar campaign on any number of social media platforms.

Melt the Ice (Facebook)

Live video sharing has become the norm among numerous social circles, friends and B2C marketing as a whole. However, making the most out of the options provided by Facebook and its live sharing features takes some ingenuity. Such is the case with Wix and its “Melt the Ice” campaign that took place recently.

The idea behind the campaign was to attract as many engagements as possible for the duration of the live event. Each comment, share or like would then attribute to the speed at which the iced-over football would melt on live video. Added to the post was a promise of a monetary reward of up to $50,000 for random commenters and people who engage with the campaign for its duration.

Natalie Andersen, CEO of GetGoodGrade explains: “Live engagement is one of the best tools at our disposal as digital marketers. Clients and customers love the attention they receive from companies they utilize, which results in brand loyalty and recurring sales over time.”

The combination of cooperation between football fans and live video engagement with the company itself proved to be highly successful for Wix. You can create the same award-winning formula through live video social media campaigns through simple copywriting tricks.

Platforms such as Canada-Writers and Hemingway can help you create engaging, trending hashtags and catchphrases for your upcoming campaigns. All you have to do is come up with a creative concept which will engage people enough to stick around for the duration of your live event.

Tweeting Bra (Twitter)

Don’t let the name fool you – Tweeting Bra is more than just a simple Twitter joke. What started as a social experiment quickly evolved into a Twitter account dedicated to the fight against breast cancer in a witty, approachable manner. While the account isn’t as active as it once was, its repository of Tweets and content serve as a reminder for brands to look outside the box with their social media marketing.

An item as simple and mundane as a woman’s bra has become a centerpiece on a Twitter account that accumulated 5,000 followers. James Daily, content editor and author of Brainished shares: “Originality truly is hard to come by in today’s age of digital media. This forces us as content creators to turn even the most ordinary items into digital marketing gold. In terms of Tweeting Bra, I believe that nothing stands in the way of clever marketers and catchy hashtags to make their mark on the industry.”

Even though your company may not support a cause as noble as the fight against breast cancer, anything that involves social impact can become a part of your campaign. As we’ve mentioned before, you will often have to do or provide something for the local or global community first and foremost.

Once people are content with what “they” (as a collective) receive, they will be much more receptive to any sales pitches or product portfolios you present them with. Also worth noting is the role of editing and proofreading platforms in this matter – Evernote, TopAustraliaWriters, and Grammarly are a good place to start if you don’t have a professional editor onboard.

Mistakes to Avoid

Now that we have a clearer understanding of what makes an award-winning social media campaign work, let’s take a look at some mistakes worth noting. These won’t bury your campaign by any means but they might severely hinder your social media performance and impact as a result.

  • Starting a social media campaign with no content plan or long-term strategy
  • Spamming already-published content over and over in hopes of added reach and engagement
  • Lack of SEO keywords involved in hashtags, campaign titles, and catchphrases
  • No customer profile, target audience or an idea of who may or may not want to engage with the campaign
  • Lack of commenter engagement and a generally one-sided approach to social media marketing
  • Talking about your brand and product without introducing real-world application or purchase benefits

In Summary

The secret to creating a social media campaign worth rewarding comes from continuous research and outside-the-box thinking. Don’t follow industry leaders and the trends they set if you want to differentiate your brand from the crowd. Pave your own way to the audience that desperately seeks brands worth following and you will be on your way to create disruptive social media presence worth sharing, tweeting and talking about.

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Natalie Andersen is an editorial writer and enthusiastic blogger. She believes that everyone’s life has to be the result of the choices they make, but a helping hand is always welcomed. You can connect with Natalie on LinkedIn here or follow/tweet her @getgoodgradecom.

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