If you think the big companies with well known brands and names don’t need much marketing anymore, you are wrong. They need it more than ever to keep up in the positions they worked so hard to be at the first place. At it’s not always the money, but mainly the creativity that helps them to run marketing campaigns.

Since there are only 3 months left before 2018 ends, the season of the biggest marketing awards worldwide is just about to start. Until then, we’ve decided to take a look at the most outstanding digital marketing campaigns of 2018 (so far). Looking at the successful examples can help us to stay up with eyes and mind wide open, get inspired and motivated to seek for better results. Let’s take a look.

1. Kellogg’s Eggo Digital Marketing Campaign

Eggo's digital marketing campaign

Source: 360advertisingweek

Even though the whole marketing campaign started at the end of 2018, it is too good not to be mentioned. With the premiere of Stranger Things 2 back on 2017 October, Netflix and Eggo (Kellogg’s) teamed up to bring awareness to the show’s premiere. Eleven (the character on the “Stranger things”) appeared on the episode shoplifting Eggo waffles from the store and getting away by helping herself with the super magical powers she owns. Using this episode, Kellog’s later carried a social media marketing campaign which brought the company satisfying results.

Kellogg's Eggo marketing campaign

Source: Simplify 360

When “Stranger Things” season 2 arrived on Netflix, Eggo waffles saw the most social mentions in a single month ever. In Q4 2017, Eggo consumption saw a +14% year-on-year increase. Furthermore, the company continued creating waffle menus for the fans of “Stranger things” along with the upcoming 9 episodes, presented some custom Halloween accessories. This marketing campaign ended up with tons of mentions, user generated content (sharing recipes) and etc.

What you can learn and use from Kellog’s marketing campaign:

  • Pay attention to what’s happening around and cooperate. “Stranger Things” plays on nostalgia feeling in a lot of ways referring to the late 80’s in the USA. Throwing in frozen Eggo waffles in the show was just another reference from the decade when waffles were dominating on the breakfast tables everywhere, so that added some 80s flavor for the serial and gained a lot of credits to Eggo. Interesting fact is that Netflix doesn’t offer any paid placement in their shows, so Eggo had to find their own way to get in there and found a way to revive the product.
  • Feed your audience with something they like. To create a social media campaign or at least a buzz about yourself, you need to know what your audience love and try bring it to them to initiate the user generated content.

2. Ryanair. “Low Fares” Digital Marketing Campaign

Ryanair is the company which is always in a challenge mode. In order to satisfy its customers while making huge decisions and win fights in the market, a good sense of audience needs is necessary. The communication also has to be clear and sometimes even with some humor. This is what company did on the social media during the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.

Ryanair marketing campaign

Source: Twitter/Ryanair

To the biggest Germans disappointment, German football team (head coach Joachim Löw) lost against South Korea and its performance in the championship was ended. At the very next day Ryanair responded to this matter and made its move on social media.

The company adapted its slogan “low fares” to “Löw fares” for unexpected exists and flights on the last minute using the context of the unexpected German defeat. Ryanair perfectly proved its point of being the expert of the cheap flights. Even though this move was not planned or continued as a separate marketing campaign, it received a lot of attention in social media and this is why we included in our top marketing campaign list.

What you can learn and use from Ryanair marketing campaign:

  • A good sense of humor is always welcome. It can create a buzz in social media or make it even viral. People like funny things to share and talk.
  • Context matters. You can always find a new way to promote your services or products. Pay attention what’s happening around you.
  • React quickly. You need to respond to the events happening around you quickly and originally.

3. Nike. “Dream Crazy” Digital Marketing Campaign

Nike digital marketing campaign

Source: Twitter/Colin Kaepernick

Nike has always surprised it’s fans with huge and impressive marketing campaigns and other digital marketing decisions. Therefore, it has recently started a new and controversial campaign featuring Colin Kaepernick which yet brought the company a huge success. Despite countless social media shares, mentions, YouTube views (26.7 millions), traditional media and even the president of USA attention, CBC reports that company shares rose by 36%, adding nearly $6 billion to the company’s market value.

Nike came up with the upgraded “Just do it” slogan adding the point, that “A Crazy Dream Becomes Reality When You Just Do It”. However, the point here is hidden in Colin Kaepernick, a previous NFL player, who actively fights against racial injustice, police brutality and protests for freedom of speech, patriotism and natural nation’s cultural division. He started silent protests back in 2016 when started kneeling during the national anthem before the game to call attention to the mentioned issues. And it has been a while since he last played.

Kaepernick’s personalized message “believe in something even if it means sacrificing everything” is supported by Nike which shows the company stands for brave, and goal-orientated human beings, strong more mentally than physically. The company supports the same values that Kaepernick has and this is how it shows that brand has also a voice. Before running this digital marketing campaign, Nike had to take a calculated risk, giving that so much politically-tinged discussion has taken place around Kaepernick’s protests. But the company relied on knowledge of its user base, which is younger and not all that politically conservative.

What you can learn and use from this Nike marketing campaign:

  • Show your company’s (brand’s) voice and values. If you want to be seen or heard, speak loudly and don’t hide when it comes to take a position. Take a role and stand for your core values, which can make people
  • Choose a right influencer. If you are doing Influential marketing, make sure your chosen person is attractive to your target audience and your values are the same.

4. Spotify. “2018 Goals” Marketing Campaign

The popular music-streaming brand Spotify seems to understand its customer more than any other brand can. For a past few years company used to surprise people with data driven campaigns based on user playlists and streaming habits. Just before 2018, Spotify set out 2018 year goals marketing campaign with such statements:

  • “Be as loving as the person who put 48 Ed Sheeran songs on their ‘I Love Gingers’ playlist.’
  • “Be as savage as the person who made a 1 hour 55 minute playlist called “lasting longer than the mooch”,
  • “Avoid medical professionals who added these songs to operation rooms playlists: “stressed out”, can’t feel my face, Stairway to Heaven, Say you won’t let go.
  • “Keep you jacket on” and etc.
Spotify marketing campaign

Source: Bored Panda

Spotify marketing campaign

Source: Bored Panda

Spotify marketing campaign

Source: Bored Panda

The campaign was basically set in different US cities, but there were more billboards worldwide as well. The campaign gained a huge success since it was recognized by thousands of people and media.

Despite it was an essentially offline campaign, social and local media around the world were buzzing with this funny and original marketing campaign. The photos of the billboards were posted online and were shared thousands and thousands of times. What is most important, Spotify is right in line with the desires of social media audiences and it knows and cares about its target audience.

What you can learn and use from Spotify marketing campaign:

  • People love numbers and facts. You can use it originally in your own way.
  • You can go offline and still perform good online. Digital marketing campaign can start outside social media or web. You just need to surprise your audience.
  • Funny is always good. Let people laugh or smile in a delicate and smart way.

5. LinkedIn: “In It Together” Digital Marketing Campaign

At the beginning of 2018 LinkedIn, a professional networking brand created new marketing campaign that shifted the focus from the site’s capabilities to their audience trying to highlight each one’s individualism, strengths and differences. The campaign was set by asking, “What are you in it for?”.

With the answers members submitted about why they push themselves professionally, LinkedIn created a video ad campaign within the professionals from a wide variety of fields speaking about themselves.

The main message from LinkedIn in this marketing campaign is, no matter what do you do for work, how hard you do it, you have a community in the platform (LinkedIn) “Whatever you’re in it for, we’re in it together”. In this way LinkedIn enabled their own targeted audience performing in the campaign and sharing testimonies of their experience with LinkedIn. It’s an old but effective way to run a marketing campaign which brings more recognition, strengthen relationship with the customers and brings some new. Of course, this is also a good way for company to show its values.

What you can learn and use from this LinkedIn digital marketing campaign:

  • Initiate UGC in your daily marketing activity or marketing campaign. Client testimonials, their voice and position show others how credible and trustworthy you are.
  • Listen to your clients/customers/audience. Let your target audience to participate in your activity and listen what they have to say. It might lead you to new ideas and some improvements.

These are just a few examples how big companies with a big budget for marketing work and what are the outcomes when it comes to marketing campaigns. However, even if you are small company, the basics are all the same – simplicity, a little bit of creativity and attention to details. It’s all that it takes for you to start your own digital marketing campaign or just improve your online/offline marketing results.