No matter how great your marketing is, if your product sucks, it will never really sell.

I’m not really sure who said this but every time I work with a client with an average, boring or downright awful product, I’m reminded of this quote. Even the greatest marketer will have a tough time selling commodities (soaps, shampoos, banks, etc.), especially if they don’t have any new features of aspects that might appeal to consumers. However, if I were to think like that, I would never be able to run my digital marketing agency. Hence, I keep coming back to philosophy (where there is a will, there is a way) and basic consumer psychology to uncover and leverage insights around my client’s customer base. Creating buzz and awareness around these insights (or what I like to call “insightful content marketing”) can help a product stand out. That’s what the whole art of marketing communications stands on.

In this post, I’ve collated some interesting content marketing campaigns from around the world which were a break from monotony. Some of these campaigns created a unique, physical product such as an “Automated Thank you Machine” whereas some of them crafted interesting storylines in their videos. I hope you enjoy watching these and extract a few learnings for your own business!

 Top 5 Examples of Interesting Content Marketing Campaigns

1. TD Canada Trust

TD Canada Trust is a personal, small business and commercial bank based in Canada. TD Canada devised a heart-warming campaign in 2014, which was extremely successful in increasing love and loyalty for their brand not only in Canada, but across the world. What they did, basically, was installing ATM’s which apart from doing what they do regularly, also gave away all sorts of prizes from flowers, toys, personalised clothes and vacations trips and even money! The catch? All of these “Thank You’s” were customised for their loyal patrons.

See the YouTube video (over 23.5 views) below:

2. Nescafe’s ItAllStarts

A series of emotional videos tagged #ItAllStarts by NESCAFÉ won over hearts of millions of people in India in 2015. The marketing campaign featured struggling artists such as Radio Jockeys and Stand up comedians facing failure, struggling and eventually, celebrating success with a cup of NESCAFÉ. A video that’s particularly popular was the one about a stammering standup comedian, whose story you can see here:

3. AirBnb’s Wall and Chain campaign

To commemorate the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, AirBnb created an animated video inspired by a real story of one of the site’s visitors. At create.airbnb.com, users are encouraged to write personal stories about their traveling adventures. One story about a girl taking her father to visit Berlin caught the attention of AirBnb who then created the video. It went viral to the extent that Ashton Kutcher tweeted about it.

4. Mercedes-Benz’s Create your Own Car campaign

In 2014, Mercedes-Benz launched an Instagram application allowing users to create their own car model. By clicking, people are able to choose color, type of wheels and whatnot to a total of 132 combinations. You can check out this app here -> https://www.instagram.com/gla_build_your_own/?hl=en

5. FeviKwik’s Wagah Border Campaign

Cricket is not just a sport. For people from India, it’s almost a religion. For that reason cricket is of a huge interest to marketers, especially when big matches are played, such as ICC World Cup. A few weeks before the India v/s Pakistan game in 2015, Fevikwik, known for their funny commercials, released a witty ad, featuring two soldiers during the ‘Beating Retreat’ ceremony.

6. ICC Cricket World Cup 2015’s “Mauka Mauka” campaign

The same tournament was the inspiration of another brilliant ad campaign. Start Sports launched a video titled Mauka Mauka that refers to the India – Pakistan rivalry and after only half a day, the clip garnered over a million views on YouTube.

7. Aviva’s Master Blaster Campaign

Another cricket-inspired marketing masterpiece is the Padding up with Sachin campaign, featuring legendary Sachin Tendulkar. Aviva, Indian insurance company created a series of cricket tutorials for YouTube and Facebook, celebrating the father-child bond.  Apart from teaching his kid to play the basics of batting, Sachin is also giving valuable lessons of parenting and importance of being protected.

8. Lifebuoy’s Help A Child Reach 5 campaign

We’re staying in India for more creative ad campaigns. Google revealed that the most viewed ad on YouTube in India in 2015 was Lifebuoy ‘Help a child reach 5 – Chamki’. Instead of focusing on humor and fun, Lifebuoy decided to tell the truth in their video – nearly half of children who die before the age of 5, die in the first 28 days.

9. Cinthol’s Alive is Offline campaign

Another amazing ad campaign from India is #AliveIsOffline. Although launched YouTube and social media sites, the Cinthol’s campaign is telling against spending time by the computer. The ads urged people to get off Internet and live their lives. This bold campaign was met with positive response and the video bellow gained nearly 3 million views.

10. Hyundai’s A Message to Space campaign

Speaking of creative ad campaigns, check out this Hyundai really took it to the next level. The story about a girl sending her astronaut father a message with the help of 11 Hyundai Genesis cars, became one of the online sensations in 2015. With over 70 million views, the commercial is officially the 2nd most viewed ad on YouTube.

11. Clash of Clans’s Revenge Commercial

As of 2016, the most watched YouTube commercial is the Clash of Clans: Revenge commercial, featuring Liam Neeson. It served as the official Super Bowl TV commercial, but became extremely successful on YouTube, having over 110 million views after a year.

12. Coca-Cola’s Happiness Vending Machines

When it comes to innovation and surprise, Coca-Cola never fails. It has often created the most unexpected marketing campaigns, leveraging cross-functional media channels and experiences to truly engage and delight consumers. Coca-Cola’s Happiness Vending Machines was a similar marketing campaign which they pulled off a few years back with great results. This was a global campaign with machines being put in USA, UK, Egypt, India, Pakistan, Thailand and many other countries.

It’s obvious that you can win over people’s hearts by giving them small presents. Coca-Cola did just that with their Happiness Vending Machines. Secretly, the company set new vending machines all around the planet, which gave people presents like flowers, toys or even pizza. In some parts of the world, the Hug machines gave away Coke bottles in exchange for a hug.

13. TippEx’s Interactive Hunter and Bear Campaign

Not every company is as cool as Mercedes, Red Bull or Apple. As a matter of fact, most companies produce boring products. TippEx is a company which produces white correction tapes used by students. That is as boring a product as any but they did manage to create a truly innovative and interesting digital marketing campaign on YouTube which went viral. Check out the entire case study below.

Conclusion

If you noticed, barring a few – most of brands on this list don’t actually make exciting products. Bank, Fizzy drinks, Whitening tape, soap, glue, coffee, insurance. These are all commodities which have essentially had the same features and functions since they were invented. This illustrates an important point between a company and a brand – a brand is a particular type of company which is able to stay in the mindspace of its consumers by consistently communicating their values using different marketing media. Brands have perfected the art of storytelling to captivate their audiences and offer something new through interesting marketing campaigns.

So, which one are you – a company or a brand?

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