Posted on February 14, 2008
Filed Under Marketing 2.0 |
In on the absurdity of Forrester Research’s recommendation that marketers spend more money on social media advertising, I noted:
…consumers may love your products, but at the end of the day, toothpaste is toothpaste.
I recently hired a few marketing interns and am having them catalog all of the stupid social media marketing campaigns they can find on services like Facebook. I’m thinking about one day publishing a full-color, glossy coffee table book that serves as a visual compendium of the insanity of some of the social media marketing campaigns.
Last night one of my interns, Veronica, who I’ve personally trained to become a screen-capturing master, came across a true gem: the official 2x Ultra Tide Presents “America’s Favorite Stains” . Detergent manufacturer Tide apparently actually paid for a Social Ad, seen below, that directs Facebook users to the page. Meaning it’s not only losing money paying for the page itself, but losing money getting Facebook users to it.
What’s the purpose of this page? To apparently foster “community” and “conversation” around the company’s “America’s Favorite Stains” poll:
Tide is partnering with Citysearch to reveal “America’s Favorite Stains,” a nationwide poll where people across the country vote for the stains that result from enjoying the people, places and moments they love most.
How exciting! Just what America needs!
Of course, sometimes the “conversation” doesn’t exactly reinforce the image brands are looking for. It only took four Wall postings for “Joshua Ely” of Minnesota to discuss the stains nobody really likes to mention. Okay, Monica Lewinsky notwithstanding.
Unfortunately, this now-removed comment really isn’t any more degrading to Tide than Tide’s social media marketing campaign itself. At the end of the day, detergent is detergent. The Joshuas of the world might be glad that Tide’s products help them deal with their dirtiest problems, but discussing stains just isn’t a turn-on for the average consumer. Does Tide not realize that?
Apparently not, because it’s also paying money to run encouraging consumers to spoof its “talking stain” Super Bowl commercial. How this is actually going to generate some sort of tangible ROI for Tide is questionable. Right now, there are apparently . And it doesn’t look like the “” is about to go viral anytime soon. This is not to say that this social media marketing campaign hasn’t technically been implemented well; it’s just obvious that engaging people around a detergent is difficult to do.
It’s quite sad to see that more and more brands are apparently being conned into implementing campaigns similar in nature to Tide’s “America’s Favorite Stains” campaign. Not because they’re currently subsidizing but because stupidity, although entertaining, is, at the core, always more tragic than amusing.
Here’s a tip: before brands waste their money implementing marketing campaigns, they should consider their position in the world and in an average consumer’s life. Without a realistic assessment of their position and how they can best relate their product to the consumer, their social media marketing campaigns are probably doomed to mediocrity at best and complete failure at worst.
Disclaimer: Tide is owned by Procter & Gamble, a company that I still love because it has been a generous donor to my bank account. No hard feelings, right? I bought some Tide yesterday to remove a stain caused by a drop of 1996 Chateau Lafite-Rothschild and promise to religiously recommend Tide to all my friends.
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