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The Convergence of Advertising and Social Media

Blog post date icon  08th March 2013    Blog post comment icon    Comments

Any advertising campaign worth its salt must consider social media as part of the mix.  In many instances we now see advertising become more heavily or even solely weighted in the digital domain. It is becoming realistic to foresee a time where the majority of advertising budgets may funnel into online strategy.

With larger portions of the market having access to high-quality broadband, it is possible to deliver high definition and highly interactive material via video, apps and games. Online advertising is more viral by nature and with the right campaign targeted to the right target market,  you can achieve huge penetration.

We’ve listed some recent advertising campaigns that have made extensive use of social media. They have had various levels of success with some becoming international hits, but all contain some novel ideas you may be able to pinch! How does our list compare to your favourites? Let us know @Symphony3Think

1. Dumb Ways To Die – Metro Trains

It's very likely you’ve seen this one before if you are Australian based. But it’s hard to knock it off first place with almost 41.5 million views on YouTube. We also love the use of animated GIF’s on a dedicated Tumblr page. The campaign generated international exposure and has prompted many user-generated fan pages. The tune can also be downloaded from iTunes.


Another YouTube hit, this piece described that friend we all have. Using social media plugins, it encouraged viewers to share the videos with the friend most like the actors. The YouTube channel has a whole range of videos, starting with the original campaign followed by a range of educational content which continues to grow. The original video has been viewed 1.3 million views.

3. The Instashoot – Paper Denim & Cloth

A fashion label that decided to go against the industry trend of exclusivity and exclusion, and instead launch their Summer season online, in real-time, on Instagram. This removed the ability to touch up their images, or reveal the products to some audiences before others. It allowed all customers to be involved in the process in the same way, at the same time. Online democracy in action.


This great Twitter campaign integrated social media with physical and radio advertising beautifully. The public were invited to send  messages to their loved ones through the home safely website and provide details of when and where the message should be displayed. Messages were posted to Twitter using the #HomeSafely hashtag, and then sent to their required destination for the intended recipient.


5. Spread The Warmth – Auckland City Mission

Auckland City Mission cleverly set up a Facebook App allowing residents to track the ‘warmest’ area (the area providing the most donations to homeless and disadvantaged). We like how this application has used data to engage users, and all for a good cause too.


When did you last evaluate your advertising spending? How much of it is going to traditional sources and how can it be better utilised online? Got some suggestions for our list? Be sure to tell us!

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  • About

Fergal Coleman

Fergal Coleman has over 15 years experience in the digital communications space with a focus on digital strategies and social media . He has worked with clients in the public and private sector and is passionate about helping clients develop their digital capabilities in order to deliver better customer experiences.
View Fergal's full profile on LinkedIn.
Fergal Coleman



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