Go big or go home was the takeaway message from the BlogWorld & New Media Expo’s Tuesday breakout session “FAIL: Social Media Disasters, and What We Can Learn from Them.” Luckie & Company social media strategist David Griner and Bullfrog Media partner Dave Peck discussed a few iconic cases of social media marketing gone awry and why these examples might not have been quite the disasters they first appeared to be.
Griner and Peck discussed EA’s Dante-inspired “Sin To Win” marketing campaign for Comic-Con (pictured above), which painted the gaming company as booth babe objectifiers due to it’s risque images and caption “dinner, booty and more.” The presenters argued that while the ad was extreme, it did create major buzz.
Another modern marketing failure that got people talking was Ford Focus’s Doug, a character described by former Adweek managing editor Jim Edwards as “a rude, horny and frequently hilarious orange handpuppet who lives entirely on YouTube, Twitter and Facebook, and who was invented to promote the Focus.” Doug apparently did little to generate Focus sales, and head of Ford Motor Company’s social media Scott Monty claimed that the company put no ad revenue into promotions. Still, Peck and Griner argued that if Doug had sold 50 cars, it would generate a worthwhile $1 million for Ford.
Though disasters for the PR teams associated with them, these were not failures in the eyes of the BlogWorld presenters. “The real failures happen every day,” said Griner. “They’re campaigns you never hear about and we never talk about.” The two encouraged a strong promotion plan for any social media campaigns you put significant thought and effort into.
Stay tuned for more coverage of the BlogWorld & New Media Expo as it happens.