Why you’ll wish you were an Oscar Mayer Wiener.

In case studies on July 8, 2013 at 6:41 pm

Oscar Mayer captured the attention of the New York Times and other media with a campaign that’s bringing Wienermobiles back to the road and has all the ingredients for sizzling summer social success.

Here’s what Oscar Mayer is doing right from a media strategy POV:

1. Bringing Social to life: Seems like a no brainer that a successful strategic campaign would supersede just the digital and burst into the real world, but this aspect is rarely utilized or rarely utilized correctly. Similar to the Blue Skittles campaign which followed a (fictional) truck from the Czech Republic bringing blue skittles to market, live interactive maps and social connections to real events are utilized in the Wienermobile road rally. Teams of real mobiles will race around the country giving fans a chance to submit ideas and earn points by tweeting @wienermobile. This tangible connection to reality (fans could actually see a mobile and instagram it) provides more frequent reenforcements of the message and encourages action.

2. Gamification: If you want fans to be involved, give them a cause to get behind or a reason to frequently check back. Strategic insertion of gamification into the campaign gives fans incentive to not just experience the campaign once and never come back, but provides real reasons for frequent social interactions and eyes on the scoreboard. In order to participate fans must join a team:

Screen Shot 2013-07-08 at 2.27.16 PMStickers backing teams will be sent to the first 10,000 signers to each group and the winning team will get a T-shirt. Shipping off more tangibles not only encourages fans to push for their team by earning points, but also disseminates branded material that social participators will be proud to show off.

3. Croudsourced Challenges: The section of the website allows users to contribute a large range of ideas for the wienermobiles on the physical journey. From requesting appearances at iconic festivals to suggesting hilarious pranks, this is yet another way that allows the Oscar Mayer fanbase to be part of the campaign and feel a personal connection with the brand. Its also always a smart idea to allows your fanbase to dictate direction. Without a knowledge of who you are communicating to, even the most strategic social media campaign can go unseen. Despite research and other metrics to gauge this ahead of time, it is wise to also open the floor to consumers. McDonalds Canada was able to change perceptions about their food by simply allowing users to ask questions and vowing to answer them completely and honestly.

4. Hashtagged Team Names: May seem like a no-brainer, but not doing this could have led to a number of problems. Each of the participating wienermobiles has a name that is a hashtag, which keeps things simple and separated while also driving traffic into easily monitor-able columns in, say, a HootSuite account.

5. Consistency with conventional Oscar Mayer Branding: Beginning in the late 1800s in Chicago, Oscar Mayer has been known through out my life time for iconic mobiles and commercials such as “I wish I was an Oscar Mayer Wiener”  and “My bologna has a first name.” Not that they are a company I’ve ever known much about, but growing up in a typical American town, its hard to miss their ad messaging and catchy tunes. I think this campaign stays consistent with the image they’ve always seemed to project of families and simple summer fun.

Noticing the campaign in the NYT, I was impressed with a number of the approaches it took. While it’s all just beginning I’ll be interested in watching it unfold and seeing how execution of the strategic approach can lead to fan engagement. It’s also a social campaign that may have easy key performance indicators, meaning I’d love to see how they measure the success of their input.

Does anyone else have any ideas on this campaign? I feel like some of the above things that they are doing right might have universally positive impacts on social campaigns. Has anyone tried any of the above and agree/disagree?


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