From #staypicky to #yesequality The Top 5 Social Media Campaigns of 2015….so far

From #staypicky to #yesequality The Top 5 Social Media Campaigns of 2015….so far

It’s now September, I had to write that down to actually believe. 2015 seems to be flying by. Given how fast it seems to be going I thought it was time to take a timeout and have a quick look back over the year and see what social media campaigns stood out to me from MNCs.

There have been a lot of campaigns done whether it was around a product, an event or a person. We managed (eventually) to narrow it down to five campaigns:

  1. Subways #staypicky campaign
  2. Harley Davidsons #photooftheday
  3. #UFC189
  4. Ben & Jerrys Yes Equality
  5. Guinness The Brewers Project

These campaigns were chosen on the basis of

  • Impact
  • Content
  • What campaigns stood out to us

We will also give your business tips on what the key takeaway is from these campaigns as well.


Subways #staypicky campaign

When it comes to Subway one of their USP (unique selling points) is the variety of items that people can have in their subways. From the large selection of meats to their salads and dressings Subway like to create an image that each person has a unique way to eat their Subway (just ask our Sales Chief Akhil).

For their #staypicky campaign all customers had to do was use the hashtag and tweet a picture of their sub. What stood out for me with this campaign was that not only did it generate a great amount of User Generated Content but it also helped each person feel like they were not only part of a movement but also an individual at the same time. You like subway as do others but you’re also unique in what you have with your Subway. This is a smart tactic to use. At the same time the images used were real life and didn’t feel staged. Any images used by Subway have handmade qualities about them be it with coloured in pencils or pens. This style of images help emphasise how all their subs are handmade right in front of you.

Business Takeaway: Make the customer feel like an individual and unique


Harley Davidsons #Photooftheday

Harley Davidson is the most recognised bike brand in the world. It has reached the stage where fans are in chapters all over the world. Harley Davidson recognised that it has a hardcore base of followers and decided to launch a photo of the day campaign. A lot of Harley Davidsons content was very masculine for obvious reasons (think Sons of Anarchy). However their Photo of the Day campaign focused more on the other theme that flows through their content, freedom. Harley Davidsons are symbolised with freedom and with being out on the open road, this shines through the photos that they use. A lot of them are visually striking and help to create the image that Harley Davidsons aren’t just a bike, but a way of life. There isn’t just one biker but a whole community.

Harley Davidson recognise that they have a hardcore base of followers, they have turned them into brand evangelists. As a result they were able to combine the two things that are marketing gold for businesses:

User Generated Content + Brand Advocates

Business Takeaway: See what way you can help make existing customers brand advocates


The UFC, #UFC189

This was one I chose from a personal standpoint (and maybe Shane). The UFC launched this hashtag around their 189 event which took place in Las Vegas and which featured Irelands Conor McGregor. Of  all the sports around the world the UFC have done a fantastic job of utilising social media to create a base of hardcore followers. What stands out to me with their social media is that not only does the UFC itself have a brand but each of the fighters also create a unique image for themselves. They put out unique content on their own profiles. When these are combined they help to create a perfect storm of social media content. At the same time they’re not afraid to be controversial. These three result in great social media content:

Confrontation + controversy + aggression = conversation

The week leading up to UFC 189 had lots of events to help not only create a buzz in Las Vegas but also online as well as people were able to follow the hashtags and watch things as they happened. Even the weigh-ins which are normally just filler had an attendance of 10,000 as well as thousands online. This was all backed up by a terrific event which utilised both the power of TV and the internet.

To show you how well the UFC have harnessed social media I put out a tweet the next day. The stats I got back from the one tweet were pretty surprising. I had over 1000 engagements as a result of this 1 tweet which used #UFC189, 2 fighters usernames and had a video.

Business Takeaway: The right hashtag + an engaged audience = great engagement

Ben & Jerrys Yes Equality Campaign

During the recent same-sex marriage referendum Ireland was a hot news topic globally. Ben & Jerry decided to take advantage of this and nail their colours to the mast with their Yes Equality campaign. They were on the yes side of the campaign and in support of this they gave out free samples of their ice cream in the run up to the vote. Ben and Jerrys But as well as this Ben & Jerrys have created the image of a business who are associated with good causes. things like climate control and working with dairy farmers around the world to name just a few. They reflect good company believes and ethos. The images they use are fun and friendly reflecting their brands personality. The language they use when interacting with people is also friendly. This is also aligned with content that shows behind the scenes. When combined these help build trust and create a stronger and long lasting relationship with viewers. You get the personality and feeling that Ben & Jerry are a couple of sound fellas which you’d like to hang around with. Business Takeaway: If there is a cause that you are passionate about then support it.

Guinness: The Brewers Project

When it comes to Guinness it is synonymous with: Ireland, The Black Stuff & Older (and mostly) male drinkers. In 2015 they launched their Brewers Project campaign which saw them release craft beers. What I found interesting about their Brewers Project campaign is that it is targeted at a category that has emerged in recent years, artisan beer drinkers. This market has tripled in size in recent years and in 2015 it took in €15 million in sales. Guinness are looking to align themselves with this burgeoning and interesting sector.

At the same time they are holding onto the principles that have been at the core of Guinness heritage and history. Guinness brings across the image of patience and class. Life slows down and things are more serine. This comes across from the images and videos that they used throughout not only the Brewers Project but also their other campaigns as well.

Guinness have brilliant brand consistency throughout their campaigns and social profiles. You can tell the brand is Guinness without the need for a giant logo being in the way. They are that friend that makes you want to go for a couple at your local after work. You can feel the whole Irish local pub scene and personality throughout their videos and imagery.

Business Takeaway: Be consistent in your social media output, have a strong image.


Did we miss out on one?

These are just some of the more interesting campaigns that have taken place in 2015. From bikes to ice cream to cage fighting each has taken a smart approach to their social media efforts and helped generate

  • User Generated Content
  • Engagement
  • Conversation

Are there any campaigns that have stood out to you? Why not drop us a tweet and let us know.

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