Each year, there are always a few standout promotional ideas that hit the market. Sometimes they leave us scratching our heads and wondering why in the world a professional creative team would feel it was a good idea. Others? We celebrate for joy at the ingenuity and vision these projects achieve.
Here at CAKE, we love learning from the ideas our marketing comrades at other agencies put out into the world. Why? By enjoying the success of other brands, it allows us to get creative with our own eCommerce clients and help them create one-of-a-kind campaigns that delight their target audiences.
That said, it is time to look at the past year and highlight some of the triumphs. Let’s rewind back to 10 of the best promotional marketing ideas of 2019.
#1: Rooting for the Underdog – Cheetos
Cheetos created quite the buzz in 2019 by creating a campaign surrounding the unusual sport of curling. The snack company’s mascot—Chester Cheetah—showed off his skills as part of a campaign aimed at fans of the Olympics. There was a special limited-edition Cheetos snack, an end-zone dance video, and much more. In short, it was a catchy series that caught the attention of the public.
#2: Hyper-Local Fan Engagement – Bud Light
Bud Light turned things into a hyper-local event complete with free beer for NFL fans. The brand installed thirty-seven so-called “Victory Fridges” that opened when the Cleveland Browns finally won their first game in what felt like forever to locals. The gimmick featured actual beer, coolers, chains, and digital locks.
#3: The Scarcity Approach – Cheetos (Again)
The marketing team at Cheetos makes this list for the second time with their Flamin’ Hot Spot pop-up restaurant. The menu featured ten signature dishes that included Flamin’ Hot Cheetos as an ingredient, and the whole event only lasted three days. Scarcity worked in this case, as the online reservation system sold out all five hundred seats in an hour.
#4: Hands-On Demonstration – Uber
Despite the fact we are in a digital age, people still like to get interactive. Uber did this right in 2019 with a special event showcasing its first flying car models, plus other hands-on activities. This immersive experience delighted audiences and makes us wonder what else they have in store for the future.
#5: Content Co-Creation – HP
When most people attend Coachella, they expect to hear music from their favorite artists. HP took this a step further and created a content co-creation station for ticket holders to enjoy while at the festival. The “Digital Eden” concept allowed attendees to create water bottle labels, downloadable light art, and other artistic projects.
#6: Inspiring Civic Change – Country Time Lemonade
There’s nothing better than a cold glass of lemonade on a hot day. Sadly, many jurisdictions are shutting down youth lemonade stands, citing food safety concerns. The folks at Country Time Lemonade heard about this and created the Legal-ADE campaign to help kids pay off fines, pay for permits, and other related issues. This creative form of civic engagement is a winner in our book!
#7: Micro-Festivals for Music Fans – W Hotels
The team at W Hotels understands that not all millennials want to attend these massive, multi-day music festivals. That’s why they created micro-festivals featuring some of the hottest artists. For several days, guests at the chain’s Hollywood, Barcelona, and Bali locations got to experience live music, VIP experiences, and more. This is a great example of taking a larger event and turning it into a niche campaign aimed at a very specific set of target consumers.
#8: Approach to Include Micro-Influencers – Sunny Delight
While everyone seems to be into hiring macro-influencers, Sunny Delight had a different approach. They decided to include micro-influencers with their SunnyD Boldy Original Campaign. Instead of hiring a bunch of individuals with big followings, they stuck to families and smaller influencers to create a widespread campaign.
#9: Multi-Sensory Events – Netflix
Netflix took a unique approach when it decided to push a campaign for Sandra Bullock’s “Birdbox” movie. It created a vehicle that looked like the set of the movie and blindfolded participants to simulate the plotline of the film. The multi-sensory event took place in twenty-three different cities.
#10: Personalization and Customization – Target
Target completely understood its customer market when it chose to use personalization to boost sales of its Universal Thread denim collection. In select stores, shoppers had the ability to customize pieces for free with embroidery or kitschy patches.
Of course, we are already in a new year and looking forward to a whole new set of marketing ideas. What do you want to see become a new movement in 2020?
At CAKE, we love bringing new and innovative ideas to our clients. Please contact us today to schedule your sweet marketing session.