Did you know you could power a car, recruit a soccer team, and even unite two previously unacquainted soulmates together on Facebook? Such is the stuff of the campaigns created out of Brazilian agency Espalhe Guerrilla Marketing, which has set a treacherously high bar for creativity in the social media space, for brands like Hall's, Guarana Antarctica, Trident and Avon. Here, agency founders Cleber Martins, Roberta Paixao and Gustavo Fortes (pictured l-r) shed some light on what it takes for a brand to break through in the social media space. --Ann-Christine Diaz
Turn brands into topics of conversation
With media now socialized, everyone is producing and distributing content via text, audio and video. Your audience's attention is constantly being fought over, not just by your competitors, but also by owners of cute pets who love filming their antics and posting them on YouTube. To be successful in the social environment, you have to be a specialist in turning brands into interesting, entertaining, new and courageous subjects. This way, they will be naturally brought up in conversations. This "subject factory" is what we constantly aim for [with the brand] Guaraná Antarctica, for example, the second highest-selling soft drink in Brazil and the country's most social brand. When its fanpage reached five million fans, we promoted the Friends of Guaraná game against the Costa Rican national soccer team, a country with an equivalent number of inhabitants. We have already created cars powered by Facebook likes and comments to take friends to Salvador's famous Carnival, live-streaming shows, a web series to help our fans' mothers join the digital world without embarrassing their children. Every month, an earned media initiative moves proprietary channels.
Create multidisciplinary teams
Our campaigns are managed by small multidisciplinary teams that organize themselves in one-week sprints. A committee of partners and directors participates only in the initial planning and then reviews the results of the team's work before it is brought to the client. This way, we guarantee a creative operation, integrated solutions and fast turnaround without losing sight of Espalhe's DNA.
Use PR techniques
This was how we coined headlines such as "Halls pays tribute to fans of its green grape flavor with busts made from five thousand candies."
Invest in editorial talent
Companies have discovered what the entertainment world has already known for a long time: fans are worth money. Thanks to technology, now any brand can create a community around itself. In order to keep it healthy and engaged, it is vital to feed this relationship with quality content--posts, videos, apps. Also, you should know that you will never please 100% of your audience. At such times, what matters is efficiency, transparency and a properly-aligned dialog.
Focus on the result
The agency honored fans of Halls' Green Grape flavor by hiring artists to create sculptures of them out of the candy.
Halls Causamento: Espalhe tapped Halls fans to come forward if they wanted to find a mate on Facebook. Votes determined who would get hitched during a shotgun wedding in Vegas, and fans finally threw their support to Marcos Hiroshi and Mariana Jafet, who just tied the knot this weekend.
Guarana Antarctica's Facebook Powered Car: A car carrying fans of soft drink Guarana Antarctica made its way to a Carnival party--fueled by Facebook interactions.
Guarana Antarctica Facebook Soccer Team: Espalhe also recruited a team of soccer players to compete against a Costa Rican team--all, via Facebook.
See the rest of the 2012 Creativity 50 here.