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Next Gen Marketing Starts with an Experience

KS&R's Social Insight Exchange (SIX) provides businesses a view into unsolicited consumer and business opinions by capturing online conversations.

Next Gen Marketing Starts with an Experience Hero Image

Jelly Beans are Transformed From a Simple Product to a Sharable Experience

Companies today are striving for more social media buzz, but are the typical campaigns really providing ROI? KS&R’s SIX team looked at two different ways to approach driving social activity and found that companies may not need to invest that much on marketing to increase social mentions.

By reviewing social data, it is easy to see why companies are willing to spend significant resources to hold large marketing events – it creates big spikes in brand mentions. Take for example, Budweiser’s “Whatever, USA” event which involved “taking over a town for a day” and hosting a free Snoop Dogg concert. That’s pricey. It’s easy to imagine the Budweiser marketing team justifying the investment in order to create a lot of brand buzz fast. Based on Google’s search data, it is clear that the May campaign did temporarily boost social interest in Bud Light.

A line graph showing the social media interest over time in Bud Light based on the up for whatever campaign.

Was the boost of brand interest really worth the investment? Let’s take a look at another approach to compare.

Last year we noticed a lot of social buzz around jelly beans. What was more surprising than jelly beans being a social media hit, was the fact that we could see that a particular product was generating interest and continuing to grow in 2015.

A line graph showing the social media interest over time for bean boozled.

We discovered that the Jelly Belly Company created a unique experience for consumers with a game called “Bean Boozled”. The game consists of a box of jelly beans with a game spinner that tells the player what color jelly bean to eat. The catch is that the jelly bean color could be either a delicious flavor (“Luscious Caramel Corn”, “Buttered Popcorn”) or an unpalatable one (“Baby Wipes”, “Skunk Spray”). This simple game created an experience that consumers couldn’t wait to share! People began posting videos showing the suspense of not knowing which flavor they had picked until they ate it, and talking about the game online.

A word cloud showing what people were saying on social media about bean boozled.

The next time your marketing team sets out to create social buzz, consider ways you could transform your product into an experience that customers want to share. This experience-based approach to social marketing doesn’t require a large investment to garner a big payback in terms of generating ongoing brand awareness.