ANAR Foundation manages hotline in Europe to help at risk children and teenagers from abuse and neglect. On this hotline they can find the help they need in a totally anonymous and confidential manner. But they struggled with figuring out a way to get children to know the number even exists. How could they get their message out to a child abuse victim, even when they might be accompanied by their aggressor?
Knowing the average height for adults and children under 10, GREY Spain has created two different messages. Using an outdoor lenticular print they show adults an awareness message, while children see an additional message that offers them help and the number for the hotline.
I love how ingenious the use of technology and design has become in this campaign to solve a real problem this foundation was having reaching out to their target audience. Hopefully we’ll see more adaptations like this to come from them and other similar groups.
Over the last five years, the expansive world of social media has made viral marketing a reality. The days of massive advertising budgets and endless organization appear to be nearing an end, replaced by a marketing world where anyone can generate thousands, hundreds-of-thousands, or potentially millions of page-views in a matter of days using YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook’s ‘like’ feature.
But alongside the truly huge potential for viral growth is a very familiar situation – despite there now being the networks and technology for marketing messages to rapidly spread, most generate little attention and end up ignored. Some have blamed technology for the failure of manufactured ‘viral’ marketing efforts, but more experienced marketers have human behavior to look towards.
There’s a reason most manufactured viral marketing campaigns fail: most just aren’t good. Growth in marketing, particularly in an uncontrolled online world, is incredibly difficult to create. With the power of rapid growth resting entirely in the hands of users, delivering a marketing message that people aren’t interested in hearing is an impossibility. Simply put, manufacturing ‘viralness’ is hard.
There are examples to the contrary – Old Spice’s incredibly successful YouTube message campaign being one of the most obvious. But they’ve been less the result of specialist marketing and more the end product of great content. Most people would share the Old Spice videos regardless of their commercial affiliation, while few people would opt to share a video designed to create leads.
For marketers, it’s important to realize that viral growth is largely random and almost completely uncontrollable. Rick Astley’s ongoing comeback tour can be attributed almost entirely to his video gaining cult status amongst internet users and randomly spreading. Could another artist engineer a similar phenomenon? Unlikely. There’s an element of randomness to viral growth that’s organic.
So should a viral marketing campaign fail to catch on, don’t fret. The only way to control a random phenomenon is to create as many opportunities as possible. Old Spice didn’t win over YouTube with a single video – they posted several similar videos before one finally hit the mark. Let the random nature of internet growth control your success, and don’t try to ‘create’ something that’s organic.
Image courtesy of Microbes on Think Geek
We’ve got a new client (can’t say who it is just yet) and our first project with them is to help plan a flash mob for this fall in NYC. Obviously this makes us super excited because we’ve always loved flash mobs and we love working with causes we care about, so combining the two is a bit euphoric. Excitement aside, we’ve been researching a ton about flash mobs we think were done really well, how they pulled them off, and gathering a list of tips for a guideline we’ll be sharing later this summer about Flash Mobbing for Good.
Until then, here are a few of the videos that have absolutely made us chuckle, in fact the reactions here in the office we as follows:
- 2 people cried
- 4 people laughed
- 1 person fell out of their chair
- 1 person broke their glasses because they got so emotional and excited (this guy)
So sit back, check these out, and think about how you could use a Flash Mob for your cause to drum up some support, publicity, and genuinely have a kick-ass time.
Featured image from Greenpeace Finland on Flickr.
Google has come out with their own social network called Google+, taking a direct stab at slashing away Facebook and Twitter.
We haven’t checked it out yet but all looks pretty cool. The real question will be if businesses and causes will move their focus from other social media platforms or if they’ll just add G+ to their arsenal of social media tools. Only time will truly tell. For now, you can get a glimpse of what Google+ is from the video below.
Oh and if you get a spare invite please send one our way!