The most advanced methods of content personalization are implemented by social media pages. Your previous interactions with Facebook and your friends’ taste define which posts will appear on your wall, and which ones will stay hidden. Almost all social media platforms try to understand who you are and what type of content will delight you in order to provide a great experience.
Contrarily, social media campaigns often fail to use personalization to their advantage. Considering that social sites are places where users least expect to see content that is not tailored for them and often feel disturbed by irrelevant ads, this seems like a missed opportunity.
While many advertisers use some form of personalization, even the best social media campaigns could benefit from more sophisticated solutions. We collected a few well-known success stories in social advertising, and examined how they could have been improved by personalization.
We help companies to know more about their target audience by analyzing the information their visitors provide, by using simple social sign-in forms. We also aid them in creating different versions of their websites or landing pages based on the Facebook likes and activities of their visitors.
While this post shows how social media campaigns could be improved using our methods, the collected ideas can help you to create personalized ads that encourage participation and user interaction, even if you don’t intend to use any of our services.
Examples of Personalization in Social Media: The Fiesta Movement
In an attempt to raise awareness of their new model among millennials, Ford gave Fiesta models to a hundred 20-somethings for six months and encouraged them to share their experiences. The new owners were selected from 4,000 applicants, and the majority of them had an active social media presence and a large number of followers on YouTube, Twitter or Facebook.
The company didn’t try to influence the videos and posts their ambassadors published, only asked them to look for adventures and document their stories. Persuading opinion leaders in social media to participate in the campaign had sensational results. The Fiesta Movement generated more than 6 million views on YouTube and nearly 50,000 requests for information about the car in just 6 days. It was a formative social media experiment and the first of a kind for the U.S. automobile industry.
How to make it better?
Close to 50,000 people signed up for updates during the campaign on the website of the company, and the vast majority of them hadn’t owned a Ford before. Had they signed up with the one-click solution we provide, we would have been able to store valuable information about their interests and attitudes in our database.
Armed with this information, the company could have improved the effects of the campaign by displaying different images to the different groups of people who logged in. A single, extreme sports lover, for example, would have seen the model in a more favourable light if it was photographed in nature or on a country road. For visitors who had children or at least were not single, the ads could have focused on safety.
The information collected could also have been used for personalized offers after the campaign, for example, to recommend minivans to customers who became a “family man”. This way, the brand could have formed a long-lasting relationship with the many people it reached throughout the campaign.
Do us a Flavor
Not unlike Ford, Frito-Lay intended to generate buzz among the 18-34 demographic with a social media campaign. Lays chips are a well-known brand, so the marketers didn’t try to raise awareness for the brand – their aim was to change the way their target group looks at the product.
In order to grab the attention of millennials, the company encouraged them to come up with a new flavour for Lays chips. They developed a Facebook app that let participants submit their creation easily, and also awarded them with a picture of their imagined chips bag for doing so. At a later stage of the campaign, the company put some of the consumer picked flavours in stores, and asked their Facebook fans to select the winner.
“There’s a huge movement in the U.S. around food, the passion of food, entertainment around food, and food celebrities… This wasn’t about Lays. We created tools that allowed people to celebrate their passion for food,” said Ann Mukherjee, former president of PepsiCo’s global snacks group, about the “Do us a Flavor” campaign.
This campaign was an exceptionally successful one. Over 3.8 million people submitted their ideas from 14 countries for the contest. The new flavours also increased the sales of Lays chips by 12 percent.
A connection between snacks and football…
Although customization was the key to this campaign’s success, with the help of one-click sign-in it could have been an even more personal experience. By using the information the participant shared, the app could have come up with automatic suggestions taking into consideration their taste or nationality.
Later, the company would have been able to create personalized newsletters informing the participants about products that might interest them, based on the flavours they chose and food categories they like.
Social data could also have been used to compare the participants’ taste with other preferences. For example, cheese flavoured snack lovers might prefer football to baseball. Trends discovered this way could have been the basis for further communication with the fans.
My Nat Geo Covershot
National Geographic India decided to promote a TV show, in which 10 photographers travelled to the North East in search of a perfect shot for a contest on Facebook. It was called ‘My NatGeo Cover Shot’, and people who wanted to participate in it had to upload a picture and add a caption through the company’s Facebook app. The application then created a virtual National Geographic cover page for them.
The best two imaginary covers appeared on the TV show every week, and the winner of the contest was awarded a trip to the places where the program was recorded. The application soon became highly popular among people interested in photography, and NatGeo reached 38 million new Facebook fans during the campaign.
Personalization for publishers
The activity of fans could have been amplified in this case, too, by using the data they shared on Facebook. The application, for example, could have advised contestants with photography ideas based on their location or interests. National Geographic could also have used its familiarity with the audience to create notifications.
With information about the fans’ preferences, the publishers are able to predict what type of content will interest them the most, and use it to their advantage. Nat Geo, for example, could have sent newsletters about the TV show “Discovering the untouched New Zealand” to people living in the area or interested in it.
If you would like to know more about the value of personalization for newspapers, you can find our case of detailed use on this topic here.
During the Olympics in 2012, British Airways ran an integrated advertising campaign and encouraged U.K. residents to stay at home and support their team. Besides print and TV ads, the company also created a web application. They asked people to comment, tweet and post using the hashtag #HomeAdvantage.
The user-generated content marked with this tag was collected and blended to create a symphony-like sound wave on the dedicated website. The visitors of the site could listen to the music driven by social activity, which became tenser and louder when the numbers of tweets and posts increased. The users were also able to read the individual messages building up the symphony by clicking on the dots that symbolized the pieces of content labelled with the hashtag.
Throughout this memorable campaign, around 700,000 tweets and posts were collected and tagged, including some from the athletes themselves. The website generated more than 65,000 different sounds in this period.
A personal symphony for everyone
The creation of a shared virtual space for the sports fans was an influential move by British Airways. Although the vast majority of the site’s users presumably supported the home team, it’s very likely that different events interested them. One might have been a wrestling fan, while another more interested in soccer.
The information about their preferences could have been used to create unique landing pages containing the symphony. The 2012 Summer Olympics had more than 300 various events. By displaying information about the events that interested the individual users, the company could have created an even more engaging experience.
If the site had been able to differentiate between the visitors’ locations, it could also have offered flight tickets to the Olympics for the foreign visitors, instead of advising them to stay at home and support the British team.
With intelligent filters next to a common symphony integrating every related social movement, unique sound waves could have been created for everyone!
The beginning of a journey…
Studies show that the vast majority of people understand how social login works, and more than half of them use it. By choosing a more convenient way to provide the data for registration, the users also share information about their preferences with the owners of the websites they trust.
The data obtained this way can be used to provide personalized experiences. Doing so not only helps in creating more engaging content, it could also make the efforts of marketers much more effective.
Personalized promotional emails on average obtain six times higher revenue and transaction rates than the traditional ones. Sites with 31 to 40 landing pages acquire 7 times more leads than the ones with which have less than five.
Imagine how the number of leads would increase if you could provide a personalized landing page to half of your visitors! How the effects of your email campaigns would change, if you could segment your visitors based on their preferences, and send them notifications only on the topics that interest them?
You can use social sign-in for much more than simplifying your registrations. It’s a tool that lets you become friends with your customers, follow the path of their digital footprint, and create highly relevant, personalized content along the way.
So, what do you think? Did you have good experiences with social login or personalization in the past? Have we missed any of your favourite social media campaigns? Let us know!