By now, many of you have heard of Oreo's social media grand slam during the Super Bowl. While all of us sat through that lengthy delay due to the power outage, Oreo's social media team unleashed the tweet heard round the world. The tweet read: "Power out, No problem." The tweet included the photo shown here.
15,000 people retweeted that simple message. More than 20,000 people "liked" it on Facebook. Oreo's Instagram followers mushroomed from 2,000 to 36,000.
Forbes reports on the most interesting part of the story - namely, how they managed to engineer such a rapid and highly creative response. Apparently, Oreo's brand team had set up a "command center" at advertising agency 360i’s offices in New York City. All of Oreo's advertising agency partners set up shop together at those offices, with Lisa Mann, an executive from Oreo's parent company on the phone. Mann explained how they moved so quickly: “Because everyone was together, they had everyone in place to jump on a real-time marketing opportunity, which was, how would Oreo see the blackout? And Oreo saw the blackout as an opportunity to dunk in the dark.”
What a terrific story! I love the fact that preparation yielded such a great result. They knew that the Super Bowl represented a unique opportunity. While so much attention is focused on the television ads, social media represents a huge opportunity at low cost. With the blackout, everyone took to Twitter. The volume of tweets exploded. That posed a challenge for many firms though. How do you stand out when the Twitter world suddenly became so crowded. Being prepared and ready to move so quickly turned out to be a tremendous advantage.
Notice that Oreo did not try to be controversial or outlandish. They stayed true to the brand. So many social media and television advertising efforts associated with the Super Bowl yield poor results, because they emphasize being funny or controversial at the expense of communicating an authentic and consistent message about the brand. Think about some of the ads you saw this weekend. How many times did you think to yourself: While that ad was funny, I'm not sure I know what it has to do with that product or brand.