If you're part of the working crowd, you know Starbucks. You might even say you need Starbucks, depending on the time of day. And besides the fact that we're in a Dunkin' Donuts town, we can all acknowledge that Starbucks has its place.

And apparently that place has become, for at least a couple months, a gift between friends (or even strangers). After launching their Tweet-A-Coffee campaign, Starbucks allowed Twitter users to give a $5 gift card to a friend by including both "@tweetacoffee" and the friend's handle in a single tweet. Pretty easy, right?

Users had to link their credit card to their Starbucks account, then the Starbucks account to their Twitter profile in order to advantage of the offer, but this didn't deter the 427,000+ people who participated. Research firm Keyhole tracked the success of the campaign , concluding that 34% of users bought multiple gift cards, and 32% of all purchases were made on the first day.

The major benefit for Starbucks, however, isn't necessarily the $180,000 profit from Tweet-A-Coffee, but the long term potential. Participants in the offer have matched up Twitter IDs with their mobile phones and customer IDs, leading to better customer understanding and targeting in the future.

It's the season for giving, and Starbucks has made it a simple casual act for customers that will also benefit the company for years to come. Win-win.

Posted: 12/18/2013 11:45:52 AM by Amanda Wahl | with 0 comments

When you're thinking of  great commercials you've seen or clever marketing pieces, you might not come up with the name Lowe's. This doesn't say much for its marketing besides the fact that little of it sticks out to a consumer who isn't already interested in Lowe's (read: is not an adult male over the age of 40). So one might wonder how they would do with a younger-minded social media tool like Vine.  And the answer? BRILLIANTLY.

They've taken an opportunity to shove a product in someone's face and turned it around to be a friendly tools-and-tips giver.

First, they tooled around for the 4th of July. Got some playing out of the way:

And then came the good stuff. Dig through the tweets with the hashtag #LowesFixinSix and you'll find awesome tips, from how to unscrew a stripped screw, how to keep your paintbrush bristles from bending while drying, to suggestions that make decorating easier.

The best part? People are digging it. The tips are actually helpful and people want their friends to know - the perfect situation for huge success in a viral campaign. Can't wait to see what Lowe's comes up with next.

Posted: 12/7/2013 11:50:06 AM by Amanda Wahl | with 0 comments

Target is known for its style: simple, geometric, and most importantly, catchy. Their commercials don't pitch their products at you. You're just watching TV and somehow find yourself in the middle of a funky world where things are symmetrical and the music is great. From cake mix to beach gear to oatmeal, they've managed to maintain an organized playfulness throughout all of their marketing. Enter, Vine. Expectations were high, and Target didn't disappoint.

They started with a bang, kicking off their 6-second video account with an origami stop-motion.

Right?! Pretty ambitious for a first-timer, but Target has a reputation and they know it.

Flash forward to this summer, and all the buzz surrounding their #SummerUp Decision Maker. Don't know what you feel like doing? Tap and you'll pause it on anything from "Build a Fort" to a photo of a jump rope.

Later on, they marked the beginning of football season with a clever Pickles vs. Pretzels toss of the pigskin (well, tortilla).

And as the days got shorter and we dragged ourselves inside for the winter, Target was there. With caramel apple tips, jack-o-lanterns a-plenty, and a nod to 1985's Duck Hunt:

We were very interested to see what they'd come up with for the post-Thanksgiving weekend shopping frenzy, and were pleasantly surprised to find they'd revamped their summer Decision Maker. Make friends with your buddy in line on Black Friday! Well, it's too late now but hang on to the link for next year.

Posted: 12/5/2013 11:55:28 AM by Amanda Wahl | with 0 comments