Creativity in Public Relations » youtube Creativity, marketing, great ideas, smart thinking, public relations, insights, inspirations, innovations and more. (Formerly known as Ryan's View) Wed, 05 Aug 2009 00:52:54 +0000 en hourly 1 Samsung’s 24-Hour Dance-Off Tue, 07 Jul 2009 00:34:51 +0000 Ryan Peal 24-hour Dance-off – love it!  On July 7th in London 100 competitors will take their positions on the dance floor, slip on headphones, turn on their Samsung BEAT Edition DJ music phone and start dancing . . . and dancing, and dancing for up to 24 hours as they compete in The Last Call to win €10,000 and a date with Swedish pop star September.

Last month Europeans in 9 countries entered for the chance to win a trip to London to compete in the finals, embedding a competition widget to their blog, Facebook and MySpace pages.  The widget was active for only 24 hours, so contestants had to encourage friends and family to cast their votes quickly.  The widget had a built-in leader board element so you could see if you were in the race fairly quickly.  A few weeks ago the 100 lucky winners got the call that they won a new Samsung mobile and a trip to London to compete in the grand finale.

Now this week the 100 contestants will compete at nightclub “Matter” at the O2 arena in London – each dancer has one square to dance in, and stay in.  The trick is that if anyone receives a text or a call during the competition they are out.  So the contestants have been telling their friends via their social networks that they are in the finals and to not call or text on July 7 – a natural way to talk about Samsung, the new mobile and the competition.

For the last few weeks each contestant has been working on a campaign page, adding photographs and videos (connected to the campaign’s YouTube site) and links to follow them on Facebook, MySpace and of course Twitter.   Each was interviewed answering a few questions and talking about the competition.  Everyone has some fun stories on what they are doing to make sure no one calls or texts them on that day.  And on the site you can suggest music tracks to be added to the playlist.  The whole fun will be streamed live on the campaign site, worth watching and seeing how it all plays out.

What can we learn from the campaign?  As always, having an simple concept always works – dance for 24r hours, last one dancing wins.  Doesn’t get any easier than that.  Next up, integrating the product into the campaign.  That works here naturally as the Samsung mobile provides the music at the event and people have to tell friends/family not to call/text because of the competition- a natural way to talk about the product and for it to be a part of the fun.  Leveraging social media to spread the word.  This too is built into the competition, using widgets to drive awareness, creating fan profile pages, etc., all scoring major points.  And finally, great visuals/content and a way for all to participate – 24-hour streaming of people dancing in little squares to music on their headphones, you can’t help but be a bit curious about the whole thing.

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Bed Jumping Around The World Mon, 11 May 2009 23:22:07 +0000 Ryan Peal Bed jumping – I was a rock star at it when I was little and its lucky that a four-city event called the “World’s Biggest Bed Jump” wasn’t in Australia as I would have stolen the show.  The event took place last Thursday to raise awareness of InterContinental Hotel Group giving away a bunch of free nights, and bunch in this case means 5,000,000 free nights in 4,000 hotels in 100 countries.

The campaign went visual – creating huge, giant worthy beds with built-in trampolines and placing them in New York’s Brant Park, Convent Garden in London and locations in Shanghai and France.  And, to drive some additional media interest, InterContinental rounded up some Olympic gymnasts and trampolinists (is that a word) to grab the attention of people walking by, and then invited people to come on and have a jump for themselves (and if you did jump you also got an iTunes gift card for 10 free songs – nice touch).  And yes, the Pointer Sisters “Jump” was played loud and often throughout each event.

People who came to the event were directed to two campaign sites (that link to each other) one is GetAFreeNight and the other is WorldsBiggestBedJump.  On the Free Night site you can register to get up to four free nights by staying at a number of the groups hotel destinations.  And the website is worth having a look at for more reasons than just seeing people jump on beds.  It’s a great example of a social-media driven site, with multiple videos from YouTube on the home page, updates via Twitter and a Flickr photostream – a multimedia smorgasbord of content.

Overall the campaign ticks the boxes of a success effort on multiple fronts – going to the people with something that is fun and entertaining (the huge beds); leveraging social media to extend the campaign effort and visuals; having some type of free offer to drive added interest; bringing in some level of celebrity (with the Olympians); and a fun twist of a simultaneous, multi-city event.  Definitely worth getting out of bed in the morning to check out.

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Reebok, Cirque du Soleil Fly With Jukari Mon, 11 May 2009 00:58:33 +0000 Ryan Peal “Just got back from flying around at the gym, me loves jukari.”  This is the tweet I read from a friend of mine in Los Angeles the other day which had me scratching my head and immediately tweeting back – flying around, jukarti, explain? Turns out there is a new fitness craze, well, a craze that the good people at Reebok are hoping takes off and moves the brand that brought the world Step Aerobics back in the spotlight.

The name Jukari has something to do with “to play” in Italian, and after watching some of the videos of it in action it looks like a bunch of fun.  It works with a trapeze type swings with a 360-degree swivel point that provides a sensation of flying through the gym (with the greatest of ease).  Jukari was brought to life by the amazing brains at Cirque du Soleil – a brand that provides instant credibility in the world of flying and probably helps in convincing people to give it a go.

Since I’m living in Australia, where Jukari hasn’t landed yet, I couldn’t try it out firsthand, but I definitely was able to find lots of places to find out about it.  Reebok has gone hard on the social media front, with Jukari flying across YouTube, Facebook and Twitter.  I couldn’t seem to find out if there was any type of national unveiling/launch – like setting up Jukari above the ice skating rank at Rockefeller Center (what a visual) for a Today Show appearance – so not sure how it made its debut.  My friend in LA said it just showed up at her gym one day and of course she had to try it out (and is now getting addicted to it).

Time will tell if Jukari takes flight, but the campaign definitely is working its social media muscle and provides a great example to share on how a campaign can work these new channels.  At H&K we call it the Octopus Approach – put your brand and activity out where the people are online already (the tentacles) and give them a reason to come back to your site (the head).  Now, get flying!

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Nissan Slam Dunks On YouTube Wed, 22 Apr 2009 13:25:44 +0000 Ryan Peal Recently Nissan launched a campaign on YouTube centered around the universal love and wonderment of the Slam Dunk.  The campaign is connected to the launch of the new Nissan 370Z sports car.

The campaign is relatively simply – upload your own amazing slam dunk video and hope that some of the big gun slam dunk judges (including Toronto Raptor Chris Bosh and former player now commentator Jalen Rose – both huge dunk maniacs) pick you to be one of the 20 finalists.  If you make it to the final 20 then you’ll be asked to serve up another Slam Dunk that is captured on video and uploaded for another round of voting (via views of each video).

From just casual browsing I’ve always noticed lots of slam dunk videos – so lots of guys like to show-off and impress people with their slam dunk moves, so Nissan tapped an already known interest from their target audience (sports and showing off).  The “easiness” of the campaign also works, everyone that would consider a new Nissan sports car I’m guessing would know how to shoot and upload a video.  And because the rules say no added effects or edits then a simple shoot and upload factor ensures people aren’t scared of entering because they don’t know how to edit a video.

I’m guessing that the link between the new Nissan and a Slam Dunk has to be around both being fun to do or drive, powerful performances and more guys being in to sports cars and slam dunks.  It’s a bit of a stretch but I think the simplicity of the campaign and the overall fun factor of it more than makes up for the less than solid connection.

The only thing that I think I would have loved to have seen would have been for some way for someone to actually win a new Nissan.  The Grand Prize is a trip for 2 to some city to see an official slam dunk group (Team Flight Brothers) in action and to have the chance to be a flight brother for a day.  It’s a cool trip for people in to slam dunks but I’m sure they’d also love a car.  So would have loved to have seen some extra challenge that rewarded a new Nissan – like, for example, if any of the submitted slam dunk videos received 10,000,000 views (whoever did it first) would win a car.  This would encourage people to not only get a bit crazy with their slam dunks for maximum entertainment but more importantly would motivate participants to maximize their social networks to drive people to view their video.

The deadline to submit a slam dunk video is coming up (April 26) so you still have time if you are a secret slam dunk maniac.  Overall I think the campaign works – its easy for people to come play, the content is entertaining, the campaign overall is relatively inexpensive for Nissan and could see this as an annual event.  Go Nissan!

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Creativity Interview: Positively Wellington Tourism Thu, 02 Apr 2009 21:52:46 +0000 Ryan Peal My dream/mission to speak with some of the smartest marketers around the world leads me today to Wellington, New Zealand, where I recently had a chance to speak with Sarah Peacock, the Australia Marketing Manager for Positively Wellington Tourism and client of H&K (full disclosure).  Sarah is responsible for enticing more Australians to spoil themselves and head a bit farther down under (and to the right) to visit the capital of New Zealand, a vibrant boutique city close to the some of the best wine and scenery in the world.

As with previous guests Sarah tackled the “Big 5 Questions of Creativity.”  Here we go:

1.    Is creativity important to your business?  Extremely important – across the board (domestic, international, corporate, etc.).  Getting the word out about Wellington in Australia is priority #1 as we compete with lots of destinations in the region . . . but of course we are a stand out destination with a huge amount to offer.

2.    Why is delivering or having creativity important for your efforts?  You need creative ideas to cut through the noise and get people and the media interested in Wellington.  We can’t just say “hi, we’re wellington,” you need to engage with consumers,  build a relationship with them, get them interacting with you and add something to their life.

3.    How do you define creativity?  For me it’s about innovation and having a unique voice that’s different (and more entertaining) then our competitors.  And in the end, being clever and smart.

4.    What’s the latest campaign you came across that you think rocked on the creative scale?  It has to be this funny video I saw called “Beached As” which is a funny take on New Zealanders by Australians.  It’s a great example of clever thinking that didn’t cost a lot but got people talking.  It has the right authenticity to it and “went viral” as many people also thought it was great and passed it around.  There’s nothing more powerful than friends and family sending something your way.  And my back-up favourite was a simple commercial by Cadbury with the gorilla playing the drums – nothing to do with chocolate but such a great way to add some fun to their brand.  (link to video)

5.    On a scale of 1 to 10 (1 not important, 10 very important) how important do you think creative thinking/approaches are to solving business challenges?  Of course I’d say a big 10.  In today’s fast paced world you need to have an emotional connection with consumers, and to do that you need to think of the right and smart way to engage with them.

It’s easy to see that creativity is alive and well in Wellington as Sarah and her team continue to develop campaigns that motivate people to discover this amazing city waiting to be explored.  And if you now have visions of the wonders of Wellington in your head join the Wellington Facebook group or sign-up for the Wellington e-newsletter and start planning your trip.

Get Creative!

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Mickey Mouse Serves It Up In Breakdancing Battle Fri, 06 Mar 2009 06:52:28 +0000 Ryan Peal This will not change the world, but sometimes the right kind of video can provide a momentary/mini lift for a brand in regard to connecting with consumers, reminding them they are still there, reaching a new audience or just adding a simple bit of fun to a brand.  Case in point: Mickey Mouse.

Last weekat Disneyland Paris our favourite mouse looked like he was going to get served as a cute looking French kid challenges him to a breakdance battle royale.  But, Mickey had the last laugh as he got down . . . got down on his hands and knees and head and spun right around baby right around, like a record player right around.  It’s definitely fun to watch Mickey breakdance, and definitely creates a new “surprise” moment when watching.

Obviously this was staged (I’m guessing, but guessing I’m 100% right) but to me it doesn’t matter – its fun, entertaining and works.  It shows Mickey is forever young and connected to what kids are in to today and shows he can still have a lot of fun in the process.

The reason why I wanted to highlight this video is that its a great example of a brand taking a moment to not take itself so seriously, or follow official guidelines, etc.  This is a mini moment of fun in a medium that begs for it.  Any brand could add a bit of disruption/surprise into their marketing mix as a way to keep the conversation fresh about the brand, keep people watching and wondering what may come next.  Unleash your creative wild child for one fun video project every six months – mix it up, you and your fans will be glad you do, and in the process you may learn something about how you fit in their world.  Now, watch Mickey get down, moonwalk and did a killer last dance move worth waiting for at the end.

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Skittles Changes Entire Website to Social Media Mania Mon, 02 Mar 2009 10:11:09 +0000 Ryan Peal For me this is a big one – a milestone in the Twitterdom and social media in general.  Skittles today ditched its what-you’d-expect website to a twitter-skittles-search website, with a small little popup window with a shortened version of their website with all the regular stuff.  If you are already on Twitter then you know what a Twitter search page is; if you aren’t on Twitter (besides starting) you need to check out the Skittles website to get an idea what a Twitter search page is all about.  It basically shows in real time how Skittles are a part of someone’s day in real-time, when they decide to “tweet” on Twitter about Skittles – i.e., just had a Skittles and I love them so much.

Now the fun part.  Tomorrow the Skittles site may be the wikipedia entry, or the company’s Facebook fan page, or maybe a flickr photo album or Skittles YouTube channel.  Things will be constantly changing and rotating, simply providing a whole new look at Skittles through the social media world.

This is true creative thinking.  Hats off to the people behind the decision to go all-out social media and show how Skittles do naturally add a little bit of fun and color to our lives every day.  I’m betting more brands will do something similar or exactly the same.  Next time you are working hard to get something totally crazy off the drawing board and into reality show someone standing in your way this new site and say “take that!  crazy things can and do happen, now lets make our own brand history.”

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$1M versus $20K – Creative Industry Barely Gets Love From Doritos Tue, 24 Feb 2009 22:30:45 +0000 Ryan Peal Having consumers create advertisements for brands isn’t anything new.  It’s been happening for a while now, reminding us all that really anyone can do advertising.  The most recent competition that made headlines was in the US with Doritos and the Super Bowl, where two guys made a commercial for the snack chip that actually scored better than the ones made by “professionals” (according to consumer research after the game).  This netted the amateur guys a big $1,000,000 for making the commercial and for beating the big boys.

This week Doritos in Australia has brought the same campaign down under – but the winning prize is missing lots of O’s on it, only offering $20,000 to the winner.  The campaign has the predictable upload your own, get your friends/family to vote for it, weekly prizes, YouTube channel etc.  To me it seems like a cookie-cutter approach to this kind of promotion and for a brand like Doritos thought there would be some more crazier twist to the whole thing.

Where are the weekly video theme challenges – i.e., Doritos at the Beach, Doritos are for Lovers, Doritos and dancing, etc?  How about a “film your Doritos ad at the beach” day to get some more consumers in on the action and get Sony to provide cameras to loan out for the day?  And a celebrity category connected t o some charity donation for every celebrity created one?

And most importantly, $20,000?  I know times are tough and that obviously Australia has 20M people versus 300M in the US, but can’t believe there is this much of a financial difference.  We all know how expensive ads can cost to produce so the prize money could be pumped up to say $50,000 (just sounds better and would get more people to make the effort) and Doritos still should have a cost savings.

Or maybe this needs a “big money” challenge – the kind that drove the excitement and participation for Doritos in the US (the chance to win $1M).   How about something like placing the winning ad in a new Facebook group and if the Facebook group attracts 500,000 fans (that’s big for Australia) then the creator of the video wins $250,000.  Now we are talking some big bucks to pump up the buzz!

In any case, these competitions do encourage people to think and dream creatively (so that’s a plus) and get people to bond with a brand (another plus), and some cash is better than none.  And for Doritos it provides some invaluable insight into the audience they are reaching out to, so another bonus.  So get out there, grab some Doritos and have some fun with this campaign – or do all the above and hold off and enter your ad in the US contest next year for some major big bucks.

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Pharmas Tuning In To YouTube Thu, 19 Feb 2009 04:08:17 +0000 Ryan Peal I am always getting emails and comments from people to talk about creativity in other areas besides consumer products – if you are one of them, today is for you.

I’ve been tracking some pharmaceutical clients jumping in to the social media space and thought I had enough to finally put together and share with all of you.  Now I’m currently living in Sydney which has a pretty tough regulatory world to deal with, so unfortunately for my Aussie readers I don’t have any examples from down under.  (Although the world is changing fast so you could definitely use some of these examples to share with your clients or the federal government to show the benefits of social media in the healthcare industry – but that’s a whole other story).  So, without further adieu, lets take a look at some good examples of pharma companies trying some new and creative ways (for them at least) to engage with people:

First up, is Abbott who is using their YouTube channel to highlight their ongoing community efforts.  So not a big drug push by any means by a nice and natural way to showcase what they are doing in local areas to help people on the local level.  A great “toe in the water” for Abbott.

Next is GSK (GlaxoSmithKline) who is using their YouTube channel as more of an GSK-TV, mini news stories (like VNRs) to show off some of their efforts.  They also have some high-level talent hosting, one at least in the form of their CEO (well done!).  GSK also has some recruitment type videos, stories from employees on why they work for GSK.

And take a moment to check out J&J (Johnson & Johnson) who was one of the first major pharmas to jump in to YouTube.  The company has several different video channels within the overall J&J Health channel.  They have a variety of “news” segments (like GSK) but also they have videos from patients talking about the importance of nurses, heart disease and some “real moms” talking about having a baby.  Every topic connects of course to some type of company product/service/research (as it should) and are all simple and casual to watch.  J&J definitely has the most videos, views and subscribers of the pharmas on YouTube.

And a relatively new one entrant that takes things a bit further with a specific product focus and a related microsite are the good people at Astra Zeneca with their asthma drug Symbicort.  At people are encouraged to upload their own personal story of overcoming asthma, and connected to the related YouTube page to add their video and view others.  There are lots of disclaimers on what you can and can’t say in your video (for example you can’t say the name of the drug you take but you have to be over 18 and taking Symbicort).  I can’t seem to grab one of the videos to share so you’ll have to go look but they all seem like nice, patient-first, talk from the heart videos.

A big “WOOHOO” to all of these companies for jumping in to the social media fun, despite having to walk a very fine line of regulatory fun.  And for all of you out there trying to persuade colleagues/clients to engage consumers where they are online, hope these examples come in handy for your next debate.  And of course please chime in with any that you have come across too.

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