Super Bowl Blackout: How to Use Social Media During Prime Moments

The lights went out in New Orleans last night just after the halftime show of the Super Bowl, the outage caused a 35 minute delay in the biggest game of the year. While the 49ers and Ravens did their best to stay limber during the stoppage, social media users and several brands had some fun with the situation.

The Super Bowl blackout is a textbook example of a messaging opportunity for brands. With all eyes on New Orleans, savvy marketers jumped into the conversation, bringing their own brand’s perspective to the unexpected, buzz-worthy event.

Oreo Leaps into the Top 5 Brands with Buzz

We’ve twice looked at the most buzzed about Super Bowl advertising brands leading up to the Big Game, in this post and this post. Oreo Cookies was not near the top 10 leading up to Sunday.  Over the past 24 hours, however, we’ve seen the little sandwich cookie, who’s social prowess we’ve touched on in the past, leap firmly into the top five most mentioned Super Bowl brands. True, Oreo’s actual Super Bowl commercial finally aired during the game, but a huge part of Oreo’s conversation share today has been driven by their outstanding, ludicrously quick reaction to the lights going out in Louisiana.

The tweet has been retweeted over 14,800 times thus far (by running the exact language of the tweet through Salesforce Marketing Cloud), the grand total is closer to 26,000 retweets, which accounts for those that retweeted it with added commentary. Oreo saw a sharp rise in mentions just after the tweet went live.

Superbowl Blackout

Buzzfeed details how team Oreo managed to get the post up so quickly.

Takeaway: Be brave. Yes, the Oreo team was on hand with decision makers at the ready, but to push content that quickly without much time to think about the potential impact is a risk. A risk that delivered.

Audi Takes a Fun Jab at the Competition

Audi, also landing in the top 10 buzzed brands over the past 24 hours, had a slightly different approach to the blackout. The German automaker got in on the trending conversation by having some fun with the fact that competing Mercedes sponsors the SuperDome.

Takeaway: Just look at the string of reactions to the Audi Tweet. For the most part, users were impressed by the playful dig. Keep your tone positive so it’s not too hard on your competitors. Also, this showcases the importance of keeping tabs on your competition. If news is happening and your brand is involved, you never know when your competitors may attempt to have a bit of a laugh at your brand’s expense.

 Calvin Klein Takes Advantage of the Latest Platforms

Calvin Klein landed in the number three position when all was said and done. Their ad featuring model Matthew Terry was a huge hit across social media, with women in particular. CK didn’t hesitate to give the ladies of Twitter more eye candy to occupy their eyeballs while the crew in New Orleans worked to restore power and restart the action.

Using Twitter’s new Vine application, CK gave its followers six more seconds of fun with abdominals.

Takeaway: CK used the primest of prime times to start taking advantage of the newest enhancement to one of social media’s powerhouse platforms. Use your social media account to show off some “DVD extra” style content.  It was a nice narrative continuation between their mainstream ad and their social presence. It also likely gave some Twitter users a glimpse at a new Twitter feature they may not have known existed.

(Note: This post originally appeared on the Salesforce Marketing Cloud blog on February 4, 2013.)


Social Media Goes Bananas Over the Ikea Monkey

Ikea MonkeyHave you heard the one about the monkey who walks into an Ikea store in Canada? If you’ve been on social media in the past 24 hours, you probably have.

Despite missing out on Black Friday deals, a rhesus monkey named Darwin was determined to finish his holiday shopping and made his way to a Toronto Ikea store, dressed in a shearling coat and diaper, the traditional shopping attire of the macaque kingdom.

Social media users jumped on the story and Twitter was quickly awash with mentions and images of the well-dressed little shopper. So far, as of 3pm EST, mentions of “Ikea” coupled with “monkey”, including the hashtag #ikeamonkey have reached over 36,500 total posts.


Twitter users @BronieWyn and @dzd_Lisa appear to be the first to tweet pictures of Darwin.


– You never know when your brand will find itself dragged into the news rather unexpectedly. In this case, Ikea does not appear to have suffered at all from the story, the animal was rounded up rather quickly, and with no harm done to patrons. Still, the brand has clearly generated plenty of social media references over the past 24 hours. A strong social media listening plan, including a playbook, will help make that sharp rise in mentions much easier to manage and workflow.

– Don’t be afraid to newsjack. All kidding aside, an animal loose in a retail store could end badly, so Ikea is wise to have not mentioned the event on their social media accounts (unless I have missed it) thus far. Still, now that Darwin is safely corralled and the story is a hit, it’s a great chance to revel in the free exposure.  Even a tweet about “customers going bananas for all these deals”, or something less hacky, could go over well.

(Note: A longer version of this post originally appeared on the Salesforce Marketing Cloud blog on December 10, 2012.)

Oreo Pride: Facebook Post Causes Social Media Stir

Rainbow OreoIn conjunction with Pride Month, Oreo Cookies made waves on Facebook on Monday evening by coming out firmly in support of gay rights/marriage. Posting a picture of a rainbow colored Oreo (which looks delicious, by the way) featuring a caption reading “Proudly support love!” to their Timeline, the popular sandwich cookie was bombarded with likes and comments within mere moments of the post going live.

Far from bringing people together, the black and white cookie appeared to divide social media users on the issue of gay rights, at least those who chose to comment on Facebook. Many have leapt to support Oreo while others have called for an outright boycott of the product.

Reaction to the image/statement was not confined to Oreo’s Facebook page, however. Less than 24 hours after the image appeared, social media had generated over 11, 600 mentions of the topic across the web.

Oreo1Twitter dominates the conversation (90%) with reaction to the “Rainbow Oreo” spreading quickly across the platform over the course of Monday evening and throughout the day on Tuesday.


Social media users appear to be overwhelmingly supportive of Oreo’s stance, with the more critical tone of the company’s Facebook wall not carrying over to Twitter. Just under 81% of posts with clear sentiment attached are positive.  This is somewhat surprising given some of the Facebook comments highlighted in this piece over at Buzzfeed. It appears that the more vehement pushback has been contained largely to Oreo’s actual Timeline.

It appears, that the post seems to have “worked” in terms of driving social conversation and getting the nation thinking and talking about the now century-old cookie. Will it translate to higher sales? Lowered sales due to the threats of boycott? Time will tell the tale.

Is there a reason for the discrepancy between the Facebook post reaction and the overall social media reaction to the Oreo Pride post? Did you weigh in on the subject via social media as well?

(Note: This post originally appeared on the Salesforce Marketing Cloud blog on June 27, 2012.)

Social Media Assembles Over the Avengers

HulkMarvel’s The Avengers arrived in theaters this past weekend and social media lit up with mentions of Marvel Comics’ premiere super team. The culmination of a four-year build up that began with the release of 2008’s Iron Man and continued with that film’s sequel, as well as The Incredible Hulk, Thor, and Captain America: The First Avenger, resulted in a new record for the biggest box office opening in history. The Avengers crushed the previous record held by the final Harry Potter film, amassing $200.3 million over the weekend.

With this in mind, we thought we would take a look at the social conversations surrounding this latest pop culture juggernaut.

Volume and Trends

Adjusting our Topic Profile to look at only Thursday (when midnight showings began) through to today, mentions of the Avengers movie account for over 931,100 social media posts.

The highest spike occurred at approx 11pm EST on Thursday night as the film was about to debut in North America via midnight showings. That hour accounts for over 91,000 mentions alone!


Hulk Smashes His way Into Audiences’ Hearts

Many reviews of the film have noted The Incredible Hulk as a highlight of the film and social media users seem to agree.  The green behemoth smashes his teammates (and Loki) with over 33,000 total mentions.


The Talent

Writer/Director Joss Whedon towers over his talented cast, with over 16,000 mentions. Scarlett Johansson is the most talked about cast member, with over 6,000 total mentions.



Males led the conversation by a narrow margin.


The younger demographics dominate with 25-34 year olds leading the conversation followed by 21-24 year olds. Avengers5Marvel has shown great care and patience in bringing The Avengers to the big screen, putting the pieces in play over several years and various films.  Congratulations to them and Disney on a very successful campaign. Disney in particular should be very happy with the news after the disappointing showing of their previous big budget action romp, John Carter.

(Note: This post originally appeared on the Salesforce Marketing Cloud blog on May 7, 2012.)

Cover photo via Flickr

Social Conversation Soars Around Discovery’s Final Voyage

Discovery SoarsThe most-journeyed craft of the US space fleet, the Space Shuttle Discovery, made its final flight yesterday and social media took notice.

The veteran vessel (it has over 148 million miles on its odometer) was on its way to Washington from Florida, bound for the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum.

The Discovery drove over 81,000 social media mentions on April 17 as it made its way north on its final journey.

Trend Lines and Demographics

Space Shuttle Discovery conversation peeked between 9am and 10 EST. The #SpotTheShuttle hashtag peeked at that hour as it leads the conversation with 7,933 posts.


Males led the Discovery conversation accounting for almost 60% of collected posts.  The 25-34 year old demo has a slight lead over their slightly older counterparts in terms of conversation breakdown. The younger demographics appear to have little interest in the space program, no doubt to Neil deGrasse Tyson’s chagrin.


Conversation Drivers

@NASA was the most retweeted handle, by a wide margin. The Smithsonian is next, followed by Emily’s List media person Alison McQuade. Also amongst the movers and shakers are the Huffington Post and Washington Post, MSNBC’s Alan Boyle and Smithsonian’s Kate Wiley.


Photo Op!

Social media was ablaze with photos of Discovery as it journeyed to its final destination.  Amongst the most retweeted usernames above, both NASA’s Photo Department and billion-dollar photo-sharing app Instagram crack the top 10.

As the rise of Pinterest and the recent Facebook purchase of Instagram have taught us, social media users are drawn to powerful images.  The Discovery conversation is just another example of how much we love a great visual.  Indeed, mentions of “photo”, “photos”, “picture” and “pic” combined for over 10,000 posts within our topic profile.

Did you weigh in on the Discovery conversation yesterday? Have you incorporated imagery and photographs into your brand’s social media activities? Tell us about it in the comments! And be sure to check out our post on awesome ways to showcase your brand with Instagram.

(Note: This post originally appeared on the Salesforce Marketing Cloud blog on April 18, 2012.)

Photo courtesy of the U.S. Navy.