Top 5 Social Marketing Campaigns on Twitter

In the last 2 years, Twitter was the source of breaking news, the breeding ground of many viral campaigns, therefore opening the doors to new personal and professional relationships. Twitter also served as a powerful marketing tool for non-profits.

My goal for this article is to share my top 5 favorite social marketing campaigns on Twitter, and by social marketing I mean those promoting social good, which must be differentiated from the commercial ones.

Generation Y likes to stand out and make a change for the better, they are committed to saving the planet and helping those less fortunate. If you have a campaign that they would be affected by, such as green energy or healthy eating efforts, they will be much more willing to support and spread the word about your organization’s humanitarian project.

But before I reveal my top 5 social marketing campaigns on Twitter, I want to give you a few reasons why any brand, personal brand or NGO should use Twitter to grow brand awareness.

  • 1 week. The time it takes today for users to send a billion Tweets.
  • 140 million. The average number of Tweets people sent per day, in the last month.
  • 177 million. Tweets sent on March 11, 2011, the day of the Japan earthquake and tsunami
  • 6,939. Current TPS (Tweets per Second) record set 4 seconds after midnight in Japan on New Year’s Day.
  • 572,000. Number of new accounts created on March 12, 2011.
  • 460,000. Average number of new accounts per day over the last month.

(More interesting #numbers are published on the Twitter blog, which you can view here: http://blog.twitter.com/2011/03/numbers.html)

These data stand at the base of successful social marketing campaigns on Twitter, from which I will extract the top 5 I like most, accompanied by a little surprise at the end.

1. Irish Tourism
Ireland chose to promote their “My Irish 140” campaign on Twitter in 2010. UK residents were encouraged to tweet their favorite things about their Irish heritage along with the hashtag #MakesMeIrish. The campaign was coupled with a giveaway prize of a 140-hour Irish adventure.

2. Ashton Kutcher vs. Malaria
In 2009 Ashton Kutcher (@aplusk) uploaded a video declaring that he wanted to beat CNN to one million followers. He tweeted that he’d also donate 10,000 bed nets to help fight malaria if he was first. He encouraged tweeters to share the message: “Every 30 seconds a child dies from Malaria. Nets save lives. Support World Malaria Day = http://www.malarianomore.org/.” The campaign concluded just in time for World Malaria Day 2010. Over 89,000 nets were delivered to Senegal thanks to Ashton & CNN’s campaign, plus additional word of mouth on Twitter. (Source: Mashable)

3. Red Cross for Haiti
Maybe the most popular Twitter campaign this year fueled donations to aid those affected by the major earthquake that devastated Haiti in January. Led by the American Red Cross, Twitter users shared and retweeted a massive outpour of support, volunteer efforts and general offers of help. This is what the tweet read:

Over $528 million in aid was raised in just over two weeks after the earthquake.

4. Ben & Jerry’s Fair Tweets Campaign
Ben & Jerry’s have just launched a new social campaign highlighting the importance of World Fair Trade Day. Called “Fair Tweets“, the campaign leverages your unused twitter characters as messages, hash tags and links to help promote World Fair Trade Day… And depending on how many characters you have spared in each tweet, the Ben & Jerry’s Fair Tweets app automatically generates a relevant message to fill that space, and is then posted with each of your tweets! Watch the video to see how it works or visit the dedicated website: http://fairtweets.com/ (Source: Digital Buzz Blog)

5. Orange’s #WinterWarmer
Orange ran a one week Twitter campaign offering to cheer up just about anyone in London, Birmingham, Manchester and Brighton, by delivering scarves and huge hot chocolates to people whose friends had tweeted #Winterwarmer with their @name… The video below shows how the campaign worked: (Source: Digital Buzz Blog)

Bonus: Worst Social Campaign.
Microsoft took a different approach using Twitter this year, but instead of creating a great Twitter campaign, it committed an interesting public relations gaffe. Microsoft’s idea seemed good at first: offer via its Bing search engine Twitter account to donate up to $100,000 for Japanese earthquake relief. However, there was a catch: people would have to retweet the initial message and Microsoft would donate one dollar for each retweet. Critics didn’t wait long to appear, accusing Microsoft of using tragedy as a marketing opportunity. Microsoft withdrew the offer and simply donated the $100,000 directly.

Do you have any favorite Twitter campaigns from the past year that I haven’t mentioned? Let me know by posting your comments below.

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Posted in Campaigns, SocialMedia

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