Innovation Inspiration : Creating Contagion

27 Oct 2013|jhall

In last month’s Innovation Inspiration, we met Generation C, the always-connected consumer. We saw how brands are adapting to new values and attitudes, fueled by empowering new technologies. We’ll see customer engagement become more creative in the coming years, as more and more of our Things are connected.

Google is exploring the concept of engagement through a series of articles, interviews and case studies called The Engagement Project. This month, we’ll focus on what it means for a brand to be engaged and how to create contagion.

Not just engaged, but contagious
Jonah Berger, Associate Professor of Marketing at Wharton, discusses the engagement spectrum and how brands can shift gears to create engaging, contagious content. His research has identified 6 principles of contagion: social currency, triggers, emotions, public, practical value, and stories.

Leveraging social media to go viral
Engagement means creating content that customers can react to and share. The Fitness industry is perfecting the art of going viral by producing increasingly targeted content that people self-identify with and feel motivated to spread the word. Bet you’ve seen some of these pictures float by on your Facebook wall…

Video killed the radio star
Gen C loves to connect via video – and brands are noticing. GoPro (‘Be a hero’) has been blowing the competition away with awesome video content; while Warner Music has eschewed Good Morning America to shoot YouTube videos to reach younger listeners.

Linking virtual & physical
Engaging does not have to be all about social media. As Facebook, YouTube and Twitter are increasingly seen as brand channels, we’ll see more experimentation with interactive pop-up stores, innovative vending machines and hitting the streets as marketers drive multi-channel acquisition and retention strategies.

An army of passionate champions
Kraft Foods has activated remarkably passionate consumers around its Philadelphia brand. The Real Women of Philadelphia have “produced more user-generated content in weeks than all of Kraft had in the company’s history.” Today, their site hosts a “sisterhood” of real people, real recipes and real experiences.

Rolling out Happiness
Coca-Cola is one of the most creative brands when it comes to engaging face to face with consumers. Recently, as part of their Open Happiness campaign, they rolled out a green space (in the shape of a Coke bottle, of course) in a grey urban space in Lithuania.

Engaging bartenders
Forget those Superbowl spots. Fireball Cinnamon Whisky is pursuing a more grass-roots approach, using social media and bartender communications, to help make it one of the hottest drinks out there.

Nike, Ford, Tide, Coca-Cola
From detergent to car brands, explore 4 more examples of how big brands engage communities.

Contagious: Why Things Catch On
We’re all familiar with the idea of something—a video clip, for example—going viral. But how does it happen? Berger identifies six principles that operate, either singly or in combination, when anything goes viral. Read the book and the workbook.

It pays to engage and share
Brandshare™ measured six dimensions of sharing – shared dialog, shared experience, shared goals, shared values, shared product, and shared history – and found a link between effective brand sharing and business value. Read the deck.

Get in touch if you’d like to hear how Added Value can help you with disruptive innovation.

Written by Jonathan Hall, Managing Director, Added Value Cheskin

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