How Social Has Transformed 3 Traditional Marketing Scenarios

Even as the media mix continues to evolve, marketing is still marketing. What’s interesting is how social has become the primary platform for many traditional marketing scenarios—and how those initiatives have changed as a result.

Product launches: Not in-person, but still personal.

For many brands, what used to be a big, in-person event has become a social event instead. Social can drive buzz and attention like never before, often at far less cost. Plus, it gives you a direct connection to an already-interested audience.

Many socially savvy consumer brands have used contests and other social promotions to launch products. For example, Callaway Golf created awareness and excitement around its new drivers with a “Tweet to Unleash” activation. New product content was revealed as more and more followers Tweeted with #LongestDriverInGolf. The hashtag trended #1 worldwide on Twitter for a four-hour period and earned Callaway nearly 2,000 new followers.

In the UK, Nescafé recently introduced two new Dolce Gusto coffee machines with #coffeegraphy. The promotion got fans personally engaged in the launch with instant coffee personality analyses and the chance to have their names written in coffee by a professional calligrapher.

Social launches have also become more popular in B2B markets. This summer, National Instruments (NI) used social to launch an all-in-one instrumentation solution called Virtual Bench. Lacy Rohre, NI’s Content and Social Media Manager, says her team used teaser content to drive early interest, then did all of their normal Launch Day activities in video form. According to Lacy, social product launches offer something NI can’t get from the traditional press event: “What’s great is that we can get data instead of a round of applause.”

Re-branding: Nice to re-meet you.

Whether it’s through acquisition or evolution, sometimes a brand must reinvent itself—perhaps even change its name. Social can make this process smoother, as the organization can lay a foundation for the new identity with already-engaged fans and followers, then build upon that equity.

For example, Garden Ridge is a 35-year-old home décor store that is reinventing itself as At Home, a home goods warehouse store. Julie Flowers Conley, At Home Senior Marketing Communications Specialist, is using Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest to help Garden Ridge fans embrace the new brand. At Home’s social presences are filled with attention-getting visuals of the store’s huge assortment—always a Garden Ridge strength—while showcasing the new contemporary brand.

Holidays: What more could you give?

How did brands celebrate the holidays before social media? I’m kidding of course, but social has opened up a world of new marketing opportunities at a critical time for year-end sales. And it’s not just the time-honored candy-cane promotion. Social gives brands the chance to actually be a part of the customer’s holiday experience.

For example, At Home published a series of how-to holiday decorating videos that were practical and infinitely shareable—and offered something to the audience the competition didn’t.

Turns out you can teach an old marketing dog new tricks.

Some things don’t change—the need to launch new products, or rebrand a company, or move merchandise during the holidays. What has changed is the way brands go about these marketing scenarios. By engaging directly with a built-in social audience and offering truly valuable and relevant content, brands are marketing more strategically than ever.

This panel was inspired and informed by our Ready, Set, Launch panel at Spredfast Summit. To learn more about how social marketing has evolved and pick up some best practices for specific marketing objectives, check out our all-new Social Media Pocket Guide.'s picture

Courtney Doman

Courtney is the Content Marketing Manager at Spredfast. She focuses on sharing smart social ideas and insights to transform the way companies connect with consumers. Courtney is a passionate football fan (supporting Arsenal and the USMNT), curious traveller, and ambitious home cook.