#boldandbetter

Kudos to Doritos for their latest marketing initiative for the It Gets Better Project in support of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. They created limited-edition bags of rainbow Doritos that are only available to supporters of the cause with donations of $10 or more. It just goes to show the voice brands have that can really make a difference. In fact, when I went to buy a bag, they were sold out! In as much as I was disappointed, I was also happy to see that donations were flowing.

Doritos is a brand that stands for being bold, so this initiative, #boldandbetter, was a perfect extension of their values. Ram Krishnan, CMO, says it best, “Doritos Rainbows chips are a first-of-its-kind product supporting the LGBT community. Doritos the brand has stood ‘for the bold,’ and we believe there is nothing bolder than being yourself.”

When it comes to social media, and all brand marketing for that matter, it is important that any creative execution be authentic to the brand voice. And if you don’t have a brand voice, I suggest you figure that one out first…and fast. As a brand, know who you are and what you stand for, and then develop innovative ideas that reflect those values. If you don’t do that, it’ll be like Halloween everyday where you’re pretending to be someone you are not (and guess what, people will notice!).

#highered Report Card

What does #highered mean to you? Most of you probably go straight to how expensive it is and all those student loans you are still paying off. I know I do. According to the conversation happening on Twitter, there are various perspectives surrounding the higher education topic including financial aid, diversity, teacher support, higher expectations for curriculum, conferences, and other. Director of Marketing at Spelman College @enjoyceinglife tweets “Retention is the No. 1 concern. Getting in to school is 1st hurdle. Being able to afford & stay in school is critical”. Students strive to take the journey from application accepted to graduation with hope that their education is of a high caliber and that they won’t spend the rest of their lives paying back tuition.

highered

@Blackboard stands to reimagine education to create a world inspired to learn. If students are going to be inspired to learn, institutions must raise their standards. Activist @Fishica tweets that institutions are failing students. The study released by the American Council of Trustees and Alumni report that 18 % of colleges and universities require a single course in American history or government, 13% require intermediate foreign language, and just 3% require an economics course for graduation. The conversation also dipped its toes in the diversity waters to promote quality in higher education. Anne D. Neal, ACTA president, states, “Too many college rating systems rely on largely extraneous measures like alumni giving or selectivity to determine which colleges top their list”.  @educationweek hopped on the bandwagon to insist that high schools should develop higher expectations as well. Adams (2015) states that “raising expectations and personalizing learning have the potential to get more students on meaningful career paths”.

Once a career path is set, next comes how to pay for it. New Jersey Congressman @FrankPallone tweeted at The New York Times report that President Obama signed a “Student Aid Bill of Rights” that would help students deal with college loans. The Lumina Foundation is a private organization committed to increasing the number of Americans with high quality education and sponsored a couple tweets regarding financial aid during the past week.

In order for the education system to step it up a notch, SXSWedu is a great event for celebrating innovations in learning and the future of education. They host sessions on accelerating excellence in higher education, educational equality and more. Retweeted by @usedgov, Dr. Jill Biden summaries the mission at #SXSWedu “Together, we can ensure education in our country is accessible, affordable and attainable for all Americans”.

And to tie is all back to this blog, an interesting read by SproutSocial indicates that students are more likely to research about higher education using social media.

Twitter Breaking Through the Fashion Week Clutter

What does Twitter tweet about? I’ll tell you. Fashion. According to The Next Web, in 2010 Twitter was taking advantage of its own platform to become a one-stop microsite to track news and comments during New York Fashion Week. The strategy was to engage with the audience where they were – Twitter – and collaborate with multiple fashion companies to curate content and conversation in one spot. In a space that is cluttered daily during a high profile event, the strategy effectively served up topics that were of interest whether runway news, designer interviews, or behind-the-scenes sneak peeks. Sponsored by American Express, the microsite “takes the difficulty out of understanding information through just a hashtag (#NYFW) by displaying tweets in a highly organized, and highly visual, way”. When it comes to breaking through the clutter, content marketing is about creative inspiration. It is about thinking beyond the product and into the minds of what the audience wants to see. And do it in a way that is visually stimulating.

#NYFW

The strategy must have been effective as Fendi followed suit a couple years later in Milan featuring interactive and behind-the-scenes content on their own microsite. While Twitter did not experience any challenges with this strategy, brands are the ones that should be careful that they don’t start deterring their audience from their brand’s main website.The downfall of digital fashion week campaigns is the controversy over whether Fashion Week should remain a private, exclusive event or whether it should be broadcast digitally. The pitfalls with creating a microsite include competing for attention with the 571 new websites that are being created every minute, the under-optimized SEO ranking, and the lack of long-term relevancy. In fact, the @nyfw and @fashionweek handles that were created by Twitter are no longer even active. On the bright side, collaborating across companies to provide a better online experience for the users is a key tactic I’d be interested in learning more about regarding whether it has proven successful across other brands and industries.

Fendi Social Wall