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5 Successful Influencer Marketing Campaigns

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by Startacus Admin

Influencer Marketing Campaigns

Influencers are a great way to market to people.

They have a huge audience, posts are more likely to be shared by their followers, and just by having your product they are giving it their own seal of approval. The bigger the influencer, the harder it is for anyone but equally big brands to actually get them to be part of a marketing campaign, but the impact of these campaigns is undeniable. Here are 5 examples of successful influencer marketing campaigns.

Lagavulin’s Whiskey and Nick Offerman, 2015 

Nick Offerman is a funny man made famous by the TV show, Parks and Rec. He is also the go-to man for tongue-in-cheek guides to manliness. As a figure hugely popular with younger generations (probably all generations, really), he was the ideal man to feature in Lagavulin’s campaign to make their product and brand more culturally relevant. Knowing the character Offerman is best known for - Ron Swanson - and Offerman’s own personality makes the campaign all the more perfect, but even without this background, you might very well find yourself in need of a glass of Lagavulin’s single malt.

The campaign won the Shorty Award for Best Influencer & Celebrity Campaign. So what was this marketing marvel? A video of Nick Offerman sitting beside a crackling fire with a glass of Lagavulin whiskey. Silently. For 45 minutes. We’re thirsty.

Arby’s and Jon Stewart, 2015

Sometimes, even being the butt of an influencer’s jokes can be turned around, and can even be an unintentional marketing campaign. Jon Stewart, massively popular and long-standing host of the equally popular Daily Show had a long-running joke about how bad Arby’s is. But Arby’s didn’t let it put them down, nor did they take the low road of trying to fight back. Instead, they decided to embrace it. Throughout Jon Stewart’s time, they engaged him on Twitter, sent the Daily Show team platters of sandwiches with jokey notes, and when he left the show in 2015, they got their most exposure. Not only did they send him a Tweet offering him a job, but they created a short video of Stewart’s jokes about them, with ‘Thank you for being a friend’ playing over the top of it.

For taking a lighthearted approach to potentially negative exposure, Arby’s retained dignity and received praise (and exposure) from social media users.

Successful Influencer Marketing Campaigns

Wear Yellow for Seth, 2015 

Step 1: Get tissues. Step 2: Keep reading. Seth was a 5-year-old boy in hospital, and  in need of his second bone marrow transplant due to the failure of his first. A life-threatening condition called SCID resulted in him having no immune system. Yellow was Seth’s favourite colour, and people around him would wear it to show their support. His parents decided that they would make a hashtag to gain a few more supporters. The idea was that they would print out the pictures people sent of themselves wearing yellow and put them up in his room to show Seth that people were thinking of him. It was never really intended to be a ‘campaign’, as such.

A few days later, when Seth was told that posts had been coming in, he asked “Is it more than 20?” When his mother told him it was, his response was “wowee”. And it was more than 20. In fact, within those first few days, 97,590 posts had come in from all over the world, with 188.2 million impressions. Buzfeed and Cosmopolitan featured Seth and the campaign by the end of the week. Celebrities from Phillip Schofield and Paw Patrol (Seth’s favourite TV show) to Bitsie Tulloch to Gigi Hadid, Ashton Kutcher, and William Shatner posted images of themselves wearing yellow with the hashtag #WearYellowForSeth. Exposure for the Bubble Foundation, the charity supporting Seth, exploded.

The last post on the website set up to keep people informed about Seth’s progress was in June this year. The second bone marrow transplant was a success; Seth is now 6 years old (because that’s how time works) and is doing well, enjoying school and enjoying life.

British Airways Innovation Lab in the Sky, 2013

One of the main reasons this campaign worked so well, and is still talked about three years later, is that it wasn’t a case of an airline getting celebrities to say how great their flights are or having a sitcom star seemingly live aboard their planes. Instead, British Airways showed what they stood for by putting together something important - a something that was the focus of the campaign, with their own brand simply in the background, pushing and supporting it.

The UnGrounded Innovation Lab campaign had 100 thought leaders, influencers, and ‘big thinkers’ from businesses such as Google, IBM, RocketSpace, and Microsoft, aboard a 5-hour flight. The idea was to show how many great ideas could come about through people putting their heads together. 22 STEM-oriented ideas came out of the flight, and British Airways, despite ensuring they weren’t the focus of the campaign, received much positive exposure. 

Successful Influencer Marketing Campaigns

Left Swipe Dat, 2015

With smoking being popularised all over again, nonprofit truth has their work cut out for them trying to stop teen smoking. They knew it wasn’t enough to just send the message that smoking is bad, and what they came up with was an influencer campaign. In a time when YouTubers can be almost as famous as movie stars, who better to engage with teens than YouTube and other social media personalities? Even we aren’t cool enough to know who core contributors Grace Helbig, King Bach, Becky G and 5th Harmony are - that’s how perfectly targeted the campaign was.

The result of reaching out to these personalities was a tongue-in-cheek music video designed around the idea of left-swiping (rejecting) the Tinder profiles of smokers. The campaign, with the influencers’ combined 34.54m followers, drove 690,130 influencer engagements, and having the video premiere during the Grammys didn’t hurt.

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Published on: 5th December 2016

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