I may get fired for this, but I am writing about Star Wars based ads for two columns in a row. Two weeks ago I wrote about the fun Startourage campaign by Quiznos. Today I'm going to look at all of the brand interaction around #StarWarsDay on Monday, May 4th to show you examples of marketing to the moment.
Being prepared in advance with great content for holidays, both official and unofficial, is one of your brand's best chances at creating content that is shared widely thanks to you sharing in on the momentum of the moment. This includes the obvious, like having Christmas and Easter themed content ready, but also includes having content for cultural events...like #StarWarsDay!
What is the #StarWarsDay campaign about?
Star Wars Day happens every May 4th, as the tagline 'May the Force Be with You' also sounds like 'May the fourth be with you' if you speak with a lisp. Everything and anything Star Wars related has a groundswell of support from geeks like me, and even, get this, non-geeks.
Brands have been catching on lately that tapping into these types of informal events is another chance for them to get their brand story out to a wide audience. Retweets, shares, and views are easier to get on this day when they're directly related to #StarWarsDay.
I'm going to start off with my favorite example first from Philips:
99 retweets? What's the big deal? Well, the most Philips has had on any other message was 12, they also shared this twice for 23 more retweets. This was a HUGE leap for them. Maybe it wasn't going to take them to a galaxy far, far away, but it certainly is going to help them expand their audience much quicker than usual.
Plus, it's funnier than anything anyone else put out.
What I liked best during #StarWarsDay brand campaigns
Some brands really got it right this year. To help you start thinking about what you can do not only for next Star Wars Day, but for other silly marketing moments in the future, here are some of the best and why they worked.
Hootsuite show why they're so good at social media with this image which combines their logo with the Star Wars theme. The image will spread their brand message in a way that isn't in your face, and is just playful enough to get shared by anyone:
Subway is another example of a brand using something closely associated with them, in this case their own food, to create a Star Wars image. It's playful, clever, and memorable; a perfect combination for any marketing to a moment opportunity:
WhataBurger are my last example of a brand taking something closely associated with them, in this case their sauce packages, and using them to create something Star Wars related. They're tying in something of their brand's with the event and driving huge shares with it:
One brand in particular has been closely associated with Star Wars for the better part of ten year: adidas. Their collaborations have been legendary in the sneakerhead and geek world alike. They did the wise thing and launched a new Star Wars collaboration, with custom adidas ZXFlux and kids clothes, on their website and across social media on May 4th:
Here's a quick one from The Pittsburgh Steelers Facebook where they show James Harrison, my favorite player and possibly the most feared man in the league, as the most feared man in that galaxy far, far away:
What I don't like of the Star Wars Day campaigns
Not everyone who sent out a Star Wars Day post was pure #win. There was this big, fat #fail from Kmart:
Taking a picture of a product you sell, then having two talking idiots say 'buy our products' is not a way to go about this. Yes, I got the reference to Han/Leia. It just wasn't good enough with that stock photo.
I'm also disappointed in Lego. They had great shares, 600+ is nothing to sneeze at, but they're highly engaged audience helped drive those numbers. I feel with something a bit more creative, dazzling, or interesting they could have pushed those numbers over 1,000 retweets easily. It felt like a missed opportunity, even with the Stormtrooper dreaming of being a TIE Fighter pilot:
Something about this video from FCA (Fiat Chrysler Automotive) just didn't click. I sat for the first half of the video thinking 'what's going on here? Cars revving?' It wasn't until halfway, and a hundred opportunities to stop watching, through the video that I went 'oooohhhh, the Star Wars theme.' They probably spent some good money on this, and it was a great idea. But: I'm a pretty hardcore Star Wars geek and if I don't immediately get the melody then your commercial is falling flat:
Yes, I intended the pun on music and 'flat.' Good night, everybody!
Discuss your favorite #StarWarsDay campaign with me below, or if you're up for it - which Star Wars movies did you watch on Star Wars Day? I watched episodes III and IV.
Content Marketing Minds is an exclusive Social Media Today column written by Matthew Yeoman every other Wednesday.