To drive more awareness around the FedExCup Playoffs, we brought an on-site Twitter experience to each of the four PGA TOUR playoff events this season. Meet the Twitter vending machine. Equipped with NFC technology, this machine gave us a unique way to interact with fans on-site, encouraging them to Tweet about the #FedExCup Playoffs and be rewarded with special prizes.

The machine traveled to each playoff event. Once on-site, fans were able to interact with the machine, responding to a question with a Tweet using a specific hashtag. The Tweet unlocked a prize from the machine, which could have included anything from an autographed pin flag or a ticket upgrade to a meet and greet with a player.

Throughout the playoffs, fans were excited to encounter the machine and the special prizes it unlocked. A few lucky fans were able to connect with some of their favorite players thanks to the Twitter vending machine experience, including Daniel Berger, Kevin Kisner, Brooks Koepka, Charley Hoffman and Hunter Mahan. Those fans walked away with a lifelong memory and of course the social media posts and photos to prove to friends that it happened.

The program not only generated more than 11 million impressions through fan Tweets and major media exposure, but it also delivered on a broader PGA TOUR objective—Connecting a real-world, offline experience to the online world where it could reach more people and show the TOUR in a new light.

My role: Strategy & Concept Development, Execution

Brooks Koepka meets a fan thanks to the Twitter Vending Machine at The Barclays.

Special FedExCup Playoffs prizes in the Twitter Vending Machine

Forbes was one of many media outlets that covered the vending machine program

USA Today was one of many media outlets that covered the vending machine story

Fans interact with the Twitter Vending Machine at The Barclays

Thanks to Bob Knorpp for having me on this week’s installment of the BeanCast. Along with fellow guests Saul Colt, Chief Evangelist at Xero; Eli Goodman, Media Evangelist/Senior Director at ComScore; and Jason Keath, CEO of Social Fresh, we talked through recent developments with native Twitter ads, TV at Cannes, and a slew of always interesting #AdFail5 topics.

Happy listening!

 

Much to my delight, Skeletor came to life on Twitter today. Or more specifically, he came to life on Honda’s Twitter account. He posted a series of hilarious Tweets aimed at longtime nemesis He-Man, as well as brands like Charmin.

SkeletorTweet1

As the Tweets started rolling in from Honda’s account, it seemed the account had been hacked. Not the case at all. In fact, the #Skeletakeover was part of an effort to launch Honda’s new television campaign, which features Skeletor and other retro toys.

Kudos to Honda for finding a fun way to bring social media into a television campaign. While some brands may attempt this sort of integration, most fail because the social media element ends up feeling too forced. This execution, on the other hand, didn’t feel forced at all. It was rooted in humor, which can play well on the Interwebs. Plus, Honda wasn’t afraid to engage with other brands and find relevant ways to tap into existing hashtags like #ManCrushMonday.

SkeletorTweet3

After helping Moet Hennessy’s Chilean wine brand, Lapostolle, develop an online presence, we noticed a growing and very engaged community. Lapostolle had legions of fans and followers who were regularly talking to each other online about Lapostolle. But we wanted to get them talking about Lapostolle to friends who possibly hadn’t heard about the brand before.

We decided to create a reward for one special fan—the experience of a lifetime—an apprenticeship at the winery in Chile. While there, this lucky fan would learn the ins and outs of winemaking from a world-class team, and leave with their very own selection of wine.

To become this apprentice, fans had to take to Twitter and “uncork the passion.” They were asked to Tweet about their passion for wine. Creativity was strongly encouraged. Fans could include a link to a video or photo in their Tweet—anything that illustrated their passion. From there, participants had to get out the vote, asking friends and family to vote for their Tweet on a dedicated website.

The votes poured in and we narrowed the participants to a top 10. From there, social media (and wine) celebrity Gary Vaynerchuk, a Lapostolle head winemaker and a blogger from Tasting Table helped make the final pick. The Lapostolle apprentice was crowned and her experience in Chile was captured for all fans to see.

As a result of this program, the brand grew for the first time in four years. This was easy to measure as this program was the only one the small brand had going. Engagement across Facebook and Twitter doubled during the program.

Uncork The Passion was named Chief Marketer’s Best Twitter Campaign of the Year.

My role: Strategy Director, Content Director

To friends, family and colleagues, my Twitter account for James Bond The Dog has been my geeky obsession over the past few years. Back in 2010, the world found out about it thanks to a local Savannah story that was picked up by CNN and media outlets around the globe.

In case you missed it, the story came to life around my talk at the BarkWorld conference and the fictional Twitter character I developed based on my dog. The video coverage also featured my inspiration for the account and character, my dog, James Bond, who howled and posed for the cameras.

As the story spread from Savannah to the nation and around the world thanks to CNN, I found myself caught up in a perfect viral storm — and I never used the word “viral.” The day the story went live on CNN.com, I had over 350 direct @replies to @JamesBondTheDog. I should note that I did respond to everyone on that day and the days following.

Since I’ve had the character rolling for awhile, I was caught by surprise when this took off, so I’ve thought a lot about why it was popular and I think there are some learnings here:

  1. There was a reason for the story. The BarkWorld conference and the fact that GMC was kind enough to sponsor our drive to the conference made everything relevant.
  2. The timing was right. Savannah news outlets interviewed me on a Friday morning, setting the stage for some fun, lighthearted news for the weekend.
  3. The joke is that if you put a cute cat or dog in something online, it will take off. But of course that’s not always the case. I know plenty of fun cat and dog related Twitter accounts that aren’t as well followed as they could be. There has to be more to it, and that’s in the content.
  4. Content is important. If you put out interesting content, people will pay attention. Stick to it.
  5. Conversation is important. Why get involved in social media if you’re not going to be social? Replying to those 350+ folks on that first day of this story went a long way.
  6. People are looking for a break. They’re looking for a break from their busy lives and from bad news. If you can do something that puts a smile on someone’s face or gives them a laugh, you’ve taken your first step to content that gets clicks.

Some of you may still wondering why I chose this outlet. People have asked me if it’s to make money. The answer is no. People have asked me if it’s a literal story of what my dog is up to. Again, the answer is no. The bottom line is I do this because it’s fun. I’m also passionate about storytelling, which is essentially what I’m doing with the account. Twitter adds different twists to the storytelling process, something that keeps me on my toes and something I spoke about at TEDx.