It’s that time already – the year is almost over and we’re left to wonder just where all the time has gone.
Thankfully, 2019 has not been without it’s fair share of incredible digital marketing moments – when your jaw drops, you chuckle with joy and a powerful impression lingers afterwards.
The sector is constantly evolving, and brands and organisations are harnessing its potential with spectacular campaigns that engage, entertain, inform and inspire.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at 10 mind-blowing digital marketing campaigns from 2019.
1. Ikea – Pinterest catalogue
The Ikea catalogue was once a prized possession in the homes of consumers. However, with more and more people beginning their buyer journey online, Ikea needed to find a digital platform for its prestigious publication. Rather than opting for the obvious (an online version on its website), the furniture retailer charted its own course by rolling the catalogue out on social media platform Pinterest.
As far as social media platforms go, Ikea couldn’t have chosen better. Pinterest is all about visuals and is a hotspot for digital consumers looking to improve their home interiors because it allows them to create their own wish list collections. This move by Ikea was a great way to increase its brand reach and encourage customers to move more quickly from inspiration to purchase.
2. Twix – The Twix Meltdown
The Twix Meltdown campaign quite literally sent consumers into meltdown by taking biscuit dunking into a different dimension, all thanks to the Twix Meltdown device. This innovative product removed and added the chocolate and caramel layers of your Twix to a hot drink, leaving you with a delicious biscuit to dunk.
However, like most things in life, there was of course a catch – the device was limited edition and in order to get your hands on one, you had to follow Twix on Instagram and wait for the official competition rules. But this delayed gratification was an effective way to drive up engagement, excite consumers and showcase the versatility of the much-loved chocolate bar.
3. BBC – Alan Partridge returns
Fictional TV phenomenon Alan Partridge first graced TV screens nearly 30 years ago and has been entertaining the masses sporadically ever since. So when Steve Coogan decided to bring the brash broadcaster back to our screens, anticipation was high.
Prior to the airing of the first episode was a brilliant digital marketing campaign centred around an email from the as-ever obnoxious Alan Partridge. The email titled ‘Clearing the Air’ was pure comedic genius, shedding light on various controversies the BBC was facing and referencing the character’s move to Sky in 2012, thus allowing the BBC to show itself in a humorous, self-effacing light. The email was shared across social media, and the first episode of the series attracted 3.2 million viewers and received 5 star reviews – quite the success.
4. Tesco – 100 years of great value
The Tesco ‘100 years of great value’ marketing campaign was in many ways very simple but it resonated nevertheless. The advert, designed to celebrate 100 years of Tesco, capitalised on nostalgia by taking viewers on a journey through history, meeting iconic characters like Morph, 60s mods on mopeds and 70s roller girls as they made their way down the supermarket aisles.
The campaign was a big success, with sales of items featured in the ad skyrocketing – for instance, it sold 147,000 cans of beans in 24 hours (double the usual daily amount).
Essentially, the key takeaway from this digital campaign is that the brand was able to boost its sales by going back to its roots and reminding the public of the heritage and traditions that made it so well-loved in the first place.
5. Warburtons – Good Bagel
The Warburtons Good Bagel campaign was something of water-cooler moment. The advert sees movie megastar Robert De Niro play a bagel-toting hoodlum from New York who storms into Warburtons HQ and threatens the CEO that if he goes ahead with producing his trademark product, ‘it will not end well’.
By hiring movie mobster De Niro to inject menace into this tale of rival food manufacturers, Warburtons breathed life into a somewhat stale ad space with an offering that’s impossible to forget – and we’re sure everyone involved made some dough from it too.
6. Greggs – Vegan Sausage Roll
British bakery chain Greggs has thrived on its reputation as a cheap and down-to-earth brand, however, when it launched its vegan sausage roll at the start of 2019, it decided to turn this stereotype of its head by parodying an Apple product release.
The bakery unveiled the vegan sausage roll on social media with a launch video titled ‘The wait is over’. This stylish video detailed some rather fabulous product features including pastry layers, flake resolution, a vegan core and 10 mega-bites. The humour didn’t stop there either, because the brand also provided some tongue and cheek responses to social media users commenting on the video, including a critical Piers Morgan.
The Vegan Sausage roll and the campaign were a big hit with Greggs dominating the headlines due to stores running out of the product.
7. Burger King – Escape The Clown
Burger King is well known for trolling its rivals and 2019 was no different, when the fast-food giant once again targeted McDonalds customers with its Escape The Clown campaign, which was themed around the film IT 2.
Burger King craftily placed an ad in a cinema magazine published by McDonalds (and available in store), which invited readers to scan the ad using the Burger King app. When they did so, an augmented reality red balloon appeared which they clicked to convert into a coupon for a one cent Whopper burger. The fun didn’t stop there either – to maximise uptake, there was countdown to ‘escape the clown’ by dashing to the nearest Burger King.
8. Doritos – Logo Goes Here
The Doritos Logo Goes Here campaign was the company’s attempt to appeal to Generation Z, known for their dislike of overt advertising. So for this campaign, Doritos took the bold move to remove its logo and brand mentions from all of its advertising and social content.
In place of these missing attributes, audiences were instead presented with ads showing Doritos bags with the logo blurred out, triangle shapes, cheese dust and other obscure symbols and images associated with the crisps.
People were also encouraged to create their own Doritos themed social content, which included a triangle snapchat lens and use the hashtag ‘LogoGoesHere’. It was an effective way to get people talking about the brand and produce content with minimal effort.
9. Transport for London – Wonderful World of Off-Peak
The Wonderful World of Off-Peak campaign by Transport for London was designed to encourage people to take advantage of off-peak travel fares and the explore the best sights in the city.
Transport for London worked with entertainment company Time Out to create an interactive map showing the best nearby attractions to London transport hubs. In addition to this, they also used VIOOH (Viewed Impressions for Out of Home) platform to create optimised ads across a range of locations which displayed copy that automatically adapted according to factors such as the day, like, location and weather. This ingeniously provided highly relevant activity suggestions to members of the public.
10. Sonos – The Brilliant Sound Experience
The Brilliant Sound Experience was an interactive sensory experience which provided people with a deeper insight into the inner workings of sound, whilst also celebrating the integration of Goggle Assistant technology into Sonos products.
The company ran a three day event, consisting of two pop-up rooms containing some incredible installations powered by Google Assistant. The first room focused on the structure of song by breaking down the different elements (vocals, beats and instruments), while the second focused on the human connection with music, with each song being played there being tied to a human emotion.
2019 has certainly been an exciting year for digital marketing, with the above brands merging creativity and technical know-how to create memorable, entertaining and attractive campaigns that have been loved by huge audiences.
If you think you’ve got what it takes to enter the dynamic digital marketing arena, consider enrolling on our Digital Marketing BSc (Hons) and learn how to craft compelling campaigns like those above.