The Ephemerality of Social Marketing

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Maybe it’s because, for years, we’ve been told “the internet is forever”, or maybe we’re tired of clearing our inboxes of promotional messages, or maybe we’ve heard one too many TV ad jingles. Regardless of the sociological, psychological or other “ogical” reasons, it seems that permanency is out and ephemeral marketing is in. So if “iconic” advertising is a thing of the past (so long, Coca-Cola polar bear), what can a brand do to make its identity stand unwavering in the social winds?

We know we’ve talked a lot about Instagram and Snapchat in the last few weeks. But these platforms are revolutionizing the way we engage with each other, with brands, and with ourselves… And the developments are worth talking about. Here at Booje, we are eager to get our (virtual) hands dirty in the nitty-gritty of this transient-type of marketing – why it works and how to do it right.

So let’s start off with why it works. Have you ever received something in your mailbox with “limited time only sales” messaging on it, gotten super excited, and then read the fine print, indicating that the sale had ended yesterday? Yeah… We’ve all been there. These sorts of fleeting sales don’t really belong in permanent settings. They belong somewhere that lasts 24 hours, is quick, snappy, and targeted to the right audience… Now, if only there was a platform that did exactly this… Facebook, Snapchat and Instagram ads all have the capacity to deliver these messages in a tactful and effective way. They get that spark of adrenaline from followers (which drives them to partake in the sale), without the risk of frustration in seeing the sale’s expiry. It’s a win-win.

Booje has created these limited-time sorts of ads. Below are some examples that worked well. They both call attention to the time-sensitivity, and include eye-catching images that complement the text.

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Using these platforms to deliver a message also offers feelings of “insider scoops” – allowing an audience to feel an even closer connection to a brand. Snapchat ads, for instance, are surrounded by a follower’s personal messages from friends and loved-ones. A brand’s position in this virtual space should not be taken lightly. The messaging should fit into this context – allowing a brand to build a unique relationship with that particular follower. Approaching ephemeral marketing with these considerations in mind can help a campaign really work.

Here are some examples of brands that use this “personal touch” in an effective way. Both Taco Bell and Amazon ask questions. They reach out to their followers the way a friend or family member would. Anything too sale-sy would feel formal. These sorts of candid interactions encourage a rapport between brand and consumer.

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Maya Angelou once said “people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel”. While this is a motto us Booje girls like to live by, it’s also something to keep in mind when dealing with social marketing – especially the ephemeral kind. Infuse your brand with an energy that will leave a lasting mark on your followers. Help them feel included and energized – and remember, there’s more than one way to be memorable.