For those of you that aren’t aware, the biggest, most talked about social/mobile promotion going on right now is the app delivered to Samsung Galaxy & Note users on June 24th to promote Jay-Z’s new album, Magna Carta Holy Grail (my full write-up of the campaign can be found here). The first 1 million that downloaded the app from the Google Play store will receive the album through the app for free on July 4, 2013, three days before it is made available to the general public.
In the meantime, fans get treated to exclusive content each day to keep them engaged and talking – from behind-the-scenes interviews on the thought process and creation of the album, to printed lyric sheets for individual tracks. The promotion is pretty brilliant, and is breaking new ground in promotional marketing strategies, turning on its head the notion that online sharing must be stopped for music to make money.
There is quite a lot to be gleaned from this campaign. Here are just a few things that social marketers, and the brands they represent, should consider in their own strategies for big social success.
- Offer a teaser first – It doesn’t always pay to just drop something on your customers without warning. Try preparing them first to generate the proper buzz and anticipation. Jay-Z and Samsung did this on a large scale during game 5 of the NBA finals with an ad pointing fans to a website offering the details. But, a teaser could be as simple as a post on your fan page a day or two before a great coupon or new contest appears there.
- Exclusivity provokes action – The only fans able to be a part of the 1 million album giveaway are owners of specific Samsung devices. Now, if you already own one of these devices, wouldn’t you be intrigued enough to at least try to be among the first million to download something so exclusive? I was. Will Samsung users feel reassured in their purchase knowing that the brand partners with artists to offer giveaways like this? Will Samsung now find themselves in the top of a consumer’s consideration set when purchasing a new mobile device for fear of being left out of the next exclusive deal? That’s the idea. You can do something similar by using your social media pages as the entry point to your own exclusive content. Does your customer want a great deal they can’t get anywhere else? Tell them they need to like your page first. Keep them there by delivering the goods again and again. They’ll love you for it. This is why consumers seek out brands on social media, after all.
- Sharing is what social is all about – Brands share with people. People share with their friends. So, give your fans something worthy of their time, and their share. People don’t go to your page to see cat memes, and ‘Like’ if they’re glad it’s Friday. They want something more valuable than that. And, you have the ability to help push virality by actually requiring the content be shared in order to obtain it. With the Magna Carta app, each piece of new content has a “share to unlock” feature employed. I have worked on several social campaigns using similar technology. Rest assured, if the content is valuable enough it works like a dream. Consumers are happy to jump through a few small hoops for a big reward.
- Your fans want to be your advocates…let them – Little by little, the makeup of Magna Carta Holy Grail is being revealed to the most interested and engaged fans of Jay-Z and Samsung, allowing them to be spokespersons for this project. That is powerful stuff. Word-of-Mouth advertising is highly sought after because people listen to their peers more than they do your brand directly. So, offer something worth sharing, make sharing easy, and get out of the way. This approach is definitely against the grain for musicians whose labels have continually tried in vain to prevent sharing of their product since the Internet came along. Jay-Z has decided instead to embrace sharing, and leverage it for his benefit. Not only did he get paid for each of the 1 million albums up front by Samsung, by allowing fans to share it he actually opens the door to many more sales of various products in the future. Think about it – how much additional revenue lies down the road when you use a loss leader to bring in new fans now?
What do you think of this promotion? How else can the tactics employed here be applied to your brand in the social space?
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