2022 has been an intense and impactful year for many. With the UK in a cost of living crisis and many feeling the financial impact of the pandemic it has never been harder to connect with consumers.
Brand marketers have had to go that extra mile to create campaigns that are meaningful, send a positive message and will also encourage them to buy into their product.
However there have been numerous brands who have managed to catch consumer’s attention and even go viral with their marketing efforts in 2022.
Below we’ve highlighted some of the campaigns that have caught our eye here at Beyond.
1. CPB London’s ‘Imagine’ campaign
A campaign that got a lot of people talking on International Women’s Day this year is this one by CPB London - a creative agency who are committed to fighting gender stereotypes in the workplace.
By drawing attention to our unconscious biases and stereotypes surrounding gender this campaign really made people think twice.
When you imagine a CEO, it is likely you will think of a male. As a result, consumers realise the stereotypes that we grew up with as children and the way that they are ingrained into our mindset now as adults in the working world. They designed simple posters with phrases like “imagine a CEO. Is it a man?” or “imagine a nurse. Is it a woman?” written on each poster.
This campaign also targeted children by releasing a colouring book where they can draw and imagine different job roles. By trying to target this problem at the source through children’s education they showed consumers their committment to fighting these biases.
The campaign results saw:
- 4.7M+ impressions
- 250K+ engagement on social media
- 10.28% organic engagement
And asides from those impressive results, it got people talking. We think this was a huge success!
2. Coinbase QR code
At the beginning of the year Coinbase released an advert that was aired during the Superbowl and which consisted entirely of a QR code that bounced around the TV screen for 60 seconds.
Users who managed to capture the code received $15 in bitcoin if they signed up to Coinbase before a certain date. The ad lead to more than 20 million hits on their landing page in one minute. As a result, the app temporarily crashed!
It didn’t follow the usual Super Bowl style ads but it has certainly gone down in history. This is likely the most expensive ad placement for the simplest ad, but it got people taking immediate action!
3. Dove’s #DetoxYourFeed Campaign
Dove have always been good at drawing attention to social issues, particularly surrounding female body image and empowerment.
It is said that by the age of 13, 80% of girls distort the way they look online. Their most recent campaign sheds light on the toxicity surrounding social media and the images and videos that young girls are exposed to daily via their social media feeds.
The video shows mothers sitting with their daughters in front of a big screen. The daughters begin scrolling through their social media feeds which are projected onto the large screen. After a few videos of influencers promoting various beauty products, the feed shows videos of their mums that have been dubbed to make it seem like they are also promoting beauty products like botox, diet pills and various things girls can buy to change their appearance.
The video finishes with ‘A girl’s greatest influence will always be her parents’.
The campaign has over 3 million views so it’s safe to say that it has had an impact on many!
Combining marketing and an important social issue isn’t a new thing but Dove always manage to pull on our heartstrings with their campaigns.
Whether you’re a mother, a daughter, a father to a girl or a husband to a woman you will have seen the impact of social media on young girls worldwide and you will want to understand and help. This campaign gets a big thumbs-up from us!
4. Tesco’s out-of-home Ramadan billboards
A campaign which caught people’s attention this year during Ramadan was Tesco’s billboard placement.
Ramadan is a Muslim holiday where people fast from sunrise to sunset, meaning they eat late into the evenings or early in the morning.
Tesco very cleverly designed a billboard which depicted a family gathering around a table holding empty plates. This image was projected during the day time, then at sunset the billboard changed to show plates that were full of food. The billboards were strategically placed in areas with a high Muslim population.
We love this simple yet powerful marketing move from Tesco.
By respecting Muslim culture they show that all religions and their respective holidays are important and it creates an open and inclusive environment for all. This campaign will have grown general brand awareness and also solidified their loyal customer base.
5. Stranger things - experiential marketing, immersing the audience in the experience
Stranger things are no strangers (pun intended) to large-scale marketing campaigns!
They have often collaborated with different brands and taken over their socials or they even created an immersive experience for customers to make them feel like they were in an episode of the hit show.
This year they didn’t disappoint with their incredible experiential marketing campaign ahead of the release of season four. Just 24 hours before the series was released they erected sculptures and projected images onto famous landmarks all over the world.
This lifelike sculpture appeared on Bondi Beach in Australia overnight:
And this image was projected onto the Empire State Building, making it seem like there were cracks down one of the facades. Another one appeared on the Menara Kuala Lumpur tower in Malaysia, too.
The aim of this campaign was to immerse fans in an alternate reality and make them feel like they were living in an episode of stranger things itself.
The success of the Stranger Things series shows how effective their marketing campaigns are and the way they manage to really build up the hype and go viral with their efforts.
6. TikTok Star Francis Bourgeois X Gucci X The North Face “Full Steam Ahead”
An example of a viral marketing campaign this year is when Gucci decided the collaborate with a famous TikTok star.
Francis Bourgeois appeared on the social media platform TikTok in 2021 and quickly went viral for his videos showing his obsession with trains. From January 2022, he had over 2,600,000 TikTok followers and 1,300,000 Instagram followers.
Gucci and The North Face then decided to announce their collaboration with Francis Bourgeois, a move which neither brand have commented on. This is an example of fast, reactive marketing efforts from two huge luxury brands who harnessed an opportunity to go viral.
Although the message behind this campaign isn’t necessarily meaningful at first glance, there is still a deeper message to consider. Francis Bourgeois prides himself on having followed his dream and stopped caring what other people think of him. He used to get bullied in school for his unusual hobby and now he is proud to be making other young people proud to follow their hobbies and not be held back by what other people think.
Some criticised this campaign because it is ‘off-brand’ and the TikTok star doesn’t embody what Gucci is all about but that is exactly why it works. Nowadays with such an over-saturated content space online, people (particularly Gen-Z and younger) are drawn to content that is genuine, fun and sometimes just a little bit weird.
So although this is an unusual collaboration, the results of doing this will pay off in the long term for these brands who will now come across as being more accessible to a younger audience.
7. Coca Cola 'Starlight' campaign
Coca-Cola have often wowed with their marketing efforts and their Starlight campaign was no exception. They created a limited edition flavour called ‘Starlight’ which is said to mimic the taste of space. Make of that what you will…
Space travel is a hot topic right now and Coca-Cola are no strangers to the space world. Their product was actually the first soft drink to be drunk in outer space in 1985 so their link with space goes way back. This campaign, as a result, was quite nostalgic.
To promote the launch of this version of Coca-Cola, the company partnered with Ava Max and launched a virtual concert just for people who bought a can of starlight. They could scan the code on their drink and watch the performance of Ava Max in the Metaverse.
This campaign has however received backlash from a few people, with some commenting on the fact that brands will do just about anything to appear ‘relatable’ nowadays.
Perhaps Coke didn’t need to go as far as involving the Metaverse but many people nowadays do expect brands to get involved in this type of marketing. We think it’s an innovative way to create some conversations around Coke and draw attention to the brand - it’s certainly an effective marketing style.
8. Sustainable marketing spotlight
One campaign which we believe deserves a special mention is Patagonia’s recent announcement.
The company recently announced that their owner, Yvon Chouinard, has given away Patagonia to a charitable trust and non-profit which will reinvest any profit not used when running the brand to fight the climate crisis. This is the biggest move that a large company like this has made to support the climate crisis and it certainly hasn’t gone unnoticed. A video of Mr Chouinard himself writing on a piece of paper ‘Earth is now our only shareholder’ went viral on instagram. There was also the option to click through and read his letter explaining the decision.
Sustainability and transparency are two of the most important things brands can do to attract consumers today. People are more likely tol buy into a brand if they know there is a sustainable credential behind it. In fact, looking at the trends for the search term over time, you can see the increase when comparing 2014 and 2020 in the Google search trends.
Aside from this fairly monumental decision from Patagonia to showcase their commitment to sustainability, there are many brands out there that are doing their best to be as sustainable as possible. For example, The Body Shop is running a campaign called #BringBackOurBottles which encourages people to bring back their empty bottles and they can receive a discount voucher for their next purchase. This customer marketing is a way to strengthen the relationship between The Body Shop and its customers while also doing something good for the planet. Lululemon is another brand who are utilising customer marketing and offering customers a chance to trade in their leggings and used clothing in exchange for credit to shop in-store or online. 100% of their profits from this go towards sustainability initiatives.
What can we expect from marketing campaigns in 2023?
2022 has been a great year for all things marketing and brands are getting more and more creative as time goes on. From breaking down old fashioned stereotypes to advertising in the Metaverse, the sky really is the limit when it comes to large-scale marketing campaigns for big companies.
So, heading into 2023 what can we expect from marketing campaigns?
- There will continue to be a shift towards marketing in the Metaverse. NFTs, cryptocurrency and virtual reality are creating a new reality for brands and the possibilities for marketing seem more and more versatile. Is it easier to market in the virtual world than the real one?
- We have already seen the strong interest in sustainability across numerous brands and this is something that will keep on growing as consumers become more conscious of their buying habits. Perhaps other companies will make a significant move like Patagonia?
- We can expect to see lots of immersive, experiential marketing from big brands. Big, bold moves that get people talking and generate a buzz is what works today, particularly because of the viral nature of social media and the opportunity to reach a really wide audience via these platforms. Watch this space!