Girl Scout Get Tech Savvy with Selling Cookies

Girl Scout cookies are an 800 billion dollar brand and now they’ve gone digital so you can buy all your Do Si Dos Thin Mints and Samoas online.

Girl Scouts are no longer relying on word of mouth to build buzz for their brand of sumptuous cookies.  They now have a strong presence across social media networks including Twitter, YouTube and Instagram.

2014-12-05_18-29-59

The Girl Scouts currently have 267,000 followers on Facebook with another 43,000 on Twitter.  Their Pinterest and Instagram accounts boast 21,000 followers.

No wonder the Girl Scouts are getting even more tech savvy with selling.

w640 (2)

Now..under the new digital cookie program.  You will be able to order girl scout cookies on your phone via mobile app or through a girl scout personal website.   The girls can either choose to sell their cookies view mobile app or website. They cannot choose both.  Then they create profiles or personalized sites that will allow them to take and fulfill orders.

w640

The Girl Scouts of America have already been working to join the social media conversation.  Most recently, they released an animated thin mint video do get in on the conversation around Saurez’s World Cup biting incident.   The video shows a Somoa cookie biting into a thin mint.  This video went on to get 1 million Youtube views.

2014-12-05_18-30-24

Girl Scout cookie were originally sold in 1917 to raise money for a girl scout troop in Oklahoma.

On a personal note, I am extremely excited for this.  Nothing like a fresh box of Girl Scout cookies will make my day.  Who cares that each cookie is about a million calories.  I love my thin mints, my Dosi Dos and my Samoas.. And who doesn’t delight in opening a fresh box of Peanut Butter sandwiches or ordering a new box of Caramel Delites.  Most recently I’ve come under the spell of Dolce De Lech.

w640 (1)

Kudos to the Girl Scouts of America for making the buying of Girl Scout cookies easier, while turning Girl scouts onto digital entrepreneurship.

Check out their digital cookie intiative here

Great Ad Campaigns That Got in on the Halloween Social Media Conversation

I always like to see what  different brands are doing during the Holidays.  From Instagram, to Twitter, to Facebook and Vine, to Pinterest and most recently Snapchat, brands are getting creative with their Halloween marketing.  Here’s a selection of cool Halloween campaigns.

Through the miracle of the moving image, see how today’s @OreoLab nomster was born!

A post shared by OREO (@oreo) on

Last year Oreo created a mashup of popular horror movies and released a Vine.  This year, Oreo celebrated Halloween by releasing a bunch of short movies on Instagram called the “Laboratorium”.  The Oreo brand used animation to create experiments on Oreo cookies creating what they called “nomsters” inspired by popular Halloween monsters.

Disney came out this holiday with a rendition of One Republics hit song featuring celebrated Disney Villians.  Familiar faces like Cruella De Vil, Maleficent, Scar and Jafar populated the music video with the caption “Disney Villain-loving teens ask themselves: is Scar the most evil Disney Villain? Watch their version of “Counting Scars,” inspired by OneRepublic’s “Counting Stars.”

The viral youtube video racked over a million views.

2014-11-02_1-46-14

Arby’s this year decided to create #trickormeat offering customers free bacon to their orders if they said trickormeat when they ordered their meals..  This was an interesting way to participate in the social media conversation around Halloween.

If you’re not getting bacon, you’re doing Halloween wrong. #TrickOrMeathttps://t.co/iI7n4qQQw7 — Arby’s (@Arbys) October 28, 2014

The campaign ran actively across twitter with one tweet racking up nearly 3,000 retweets and favorites.

2014-11-02_2-00-56Target went to Instagram for a virtual trick or treat experience.  A fictional neighborhood called Halloween Hills was created. Users got to choose between selecting a “trick” or a “treat”.  Those who selected treats got things like Halloween themed recipes.  Those who chose “tricks” were led to fun do it yourself projects.  The campaign was also put onto Pinterest and ran on its own blog. The campaign racked up 5,000 Likes on Instagram

What kind of potion do you want me to make you? Comment with #SPKsour or #SPKsweet and I might send ya a message. 😉

A post shared by Sour Patch Kids (@sourpatchkids) on

Sour Patch Kids created a series of videos on Instagram . Each of the 9 second videos were a bunch haunted house themed clips starring the Sour Patch Candies themselves.   The campaign was pushed across all of its social media platforms including Facebook and Twitter to its Instagram page. One of the captions from its Facebook page read

Sour then sweet is SO much cooler than trick-or-treat. Get to my Instagram NOW or you’ll miss the awesomeness!!!
http://bit.ly/1pCKt2A

Perhaps the campaign to get the most attention was SnapChat’s very first ad.  The ginormous social network is currently valued at 10 billion dollars, but so far has served us up NO ADS. Not until Halloween. Snapchat’s first ad was an ad for the film Ouija that hit theaters on Halloween Night, and opened to number one at the box office with an approximate 12 million dollar gross.

2014-11-02_2-30-57

How effective was the media campaign on Snapchat for the film – one can only presume it helped a lot. Speaking from my own first hand experience as a Snapchat user, I immediately noticed the ad, and was immediately aware of the film.  In fact a couple friends mentioned to me that they had seen the trailer for Ouija on Snapchat.  One can only imagine just how many people saw that ad, givem the hundreds of millions of daily Snapchat users.

Well, those were my favorite, but there were many other brands capitalizing on Halloween with cool and creative campaigns, and here are some I’ve chosen as runner ups…in terms of creativity and the ability to get in on the social media conversation around Halloween.

2014-11-02_2-50-29

….those included a cute Capital One Video that ran on Vine and received over 178,000 views.

2014-11-02_2-25-31

… and a bunch of Slim Jim videos inspired by popular horror movies like Saw, Paranormal Activity, and Scream in a search for the most Killer Snack.  Above is a short video they ran on Facebook called the Slim Jim Chainsaw Meatsacre.  That video racked up over 26,000 views and more than 100 likes on Facebook.

… Chobani Yogurt took the prize for least scary Halloween ad –but most adorable — with a Youtube video featuring dogs dressed up in Halloween Costumes eating Chobani yogurt.

PepsiMax took home top prize for the scariest Halloween campaign with a YouTube video that involved Scary Pranks, Clowns and creepy Monster Masks.

Happy Halloween Everyone!!

Female Empowerment in Ads in the Social Media and Digital Age

girlsscience

Because my plans are to go into marketing specifically advertising, I’ve been paying a lot of attention to publications like AdWeek and Advertising Age to gleam some of the most creative ads that I could.  When I mean creative, I’m talking about ads that really manage to leverage the power of social media advertising and create a sense of internet virality.

Verizon Wireless managed to tug into the heartstrings of people worldwide with an advertisement as part of their Powerful Answers campaign, with a strong message to encourage young girls to enter into STEM fields, or Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematical fields.

Days after the ad hit youtube, it racked up millions and millions of views. In fact, nearly 4 million people have watched the ad.  It really hit me how viral this ad became when I saw it even show up on my Facebook feed when a friend of mine saw it and retweeted.  When I checked Twitter, I saw hundreds and hundreds of conversations around this ad about its powerful message. The ad was then prominently featured on Good Morning America and national publications like The Huffington Post and Slate magazine.  The goal of the campaign was to break the gender barriers for women, to believe in their own thinking and get them to enter fields in STEM.

This is a far cry from ads of incredible sexist ads of yesteryear include the famous Delmonte Ketchup ad, that said opening Ketchup bottle was so easy that even a women could do it.  Of course the year this ad came out was 1953, but in this day and age one can only ask the question – What were they ever thinking??

2014-10-26_23-59-27

With a caption below it that read ““We’ve make it so easy to open our ketchup bottles even women, with their weak fingers and stupid not-man brain, can open to access our quality vinegar-tomato puree.””

The InspireHerMind campaign has been so successful that Verizon has launched series of Smartphone wallpapers based on the campaign, challenging girls to explore new fields and follow their passions

2014-10-27_0-04-23

It’s even spawned a series of women empowerment ads from other brands including one from Proctor and Gamble Dove commercial “Fight Like a Girl”.

2014-10-26_23-56-38

The focus of the “Like a Girl” campaign by Procter and Gamble was to change the connotation of what it means to “Fight Like a Girl” Dove aimed to reframe the saying as no longer an insult but an expression of strength.  The message proved to be powerful and was prominently featured in advertising week the week it was released.

The success of these campaigns brings to mind some questions.  And this might sound callous or heartless, but the bottom line for companies using advertising is to sell more product. So usually when you see an ad for Verizon, it is talking about the power of their wireless network.  Usually when you see an ad from Proctor and Gamble it is touting the modern convenience of one of its many products including Dove soap.  So one thing remains to be questioned.  Will these types of empowerment ads actually translate into increased market share for the companies?

My answer to that is I think they will. Companies can benefit from a lot of goodwill that these types of ads create from the consumer’s perspective.  People might associate Proctor and Gamble or Verizon as big greedy corporations and refuse to give them their business.  Ads like #InspireHerMind inspire hundreds of thousands of conversations and goodwill for the companies that will ultimately help contribute to their bottom line.

2014-10-27_0-28-07

I imagine that the Inspire Her Mind Campaign from Verizon and the Fight Like a Girl campaign really resonated especially with parents, moms and dads with little girls of their own.  I don’t have kids but I do have a six year old niece who I love and love to spoil.  She loves ballet and she wants to be a ballerina.  After thinking about this topic of empowering young women in the digital age, I told her that she didn’t have to just be a ballerina, she could also aspire to be a Mathematician or an Astronaut.

2014-10-27_0-40-05

Well, little nice didn’t know what an astronaut was so I explained what exactly an astronaut was to her.

“Astronauts get to fly too the moon,” I said.

After thinking about my explanation she responded.

“I really don’t want to be an astronaut”

The way she said it was so cute, and it gave me a laugh.  But with empowering ads like these now entering the social space, and resonating with the public and the media, one can only wonder if in a couple years she may rethink her aspiration.