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Shooting Stars: 12 Brands to Watch in 2014


Looking for inspiration in the new year? In this special report, Chief Marketer profiles 12 stellar brands that are doing it right. Discover ideas to steal to improve your online and offline marketing strategies in 2014 from companies such as Toys ‘R’ Us, Chipolte, WGBH, Major League Baseball, Gap, Netflix and more.

Brand: Oreo 
Idea to Steal: Social media is about consistency, not swinging for home runs.

Oreo taco wonderfilledWhile Oreo’s marketing acumen hit peak recognition with its timely tweet during the Super Bowl blackout last February, the cookie company has avoided the shared fate of Haddaway, Lou Bega and Daniel Powter. In other words, it’s not a one-hit wonder.

With the help of digital marketing agency 360i, Oreo’s award-winning Super Bowl tweet, which was retweeted more than 15,800 times, fueled the ubiquity of “real-time marketing” in 2013, which in and of itself is quite an accomplishment. But a quick look at the brand’s Facebook page, Twitter stream, Instagram feed and YouTube channel spotlights just how robust its sustained image-fueled social media activities have been since that momentous tweet—and even before it. In fact, it’s apparent that Oreo’s Super Bowl touchdown was the result of, not the objective of, the brand’s long-standing social media labors, which continue to this day.

Take, for instance, its Twitter-based banter with Kit Kat, which vied for someone’s chocolate love by starting a game of tic-tac-toe with Oreo, only to see its Kit Kat “X” in the center square gobbled up in Oreo’s picture reply. Or glance back at the entertaining animated GIFs the brand shared during the Oscars. Or watch the brand’s “Wonderfilled” campaign videos, which feature colorful cartoon animations accompanying catchy tunes. Or maybe you’ll be interested in watching a brief “Snack Hacks” video showing how to make Oreo popcorn on the brand’s Instagram feed.

The visually charged brand has made a particularly notable impact on Instagram, where its following multiplied more than tenfold to about 20,000 after a Super Bowl commercial plugging its @oreo Instagram account. That account now boasts more than 103,000 followers.

Oreo serves as a reminder that the goal on social media must be bigger than nailing a one-time blip—it should be a steady, collaborative effort to engage and amuse audiences day in and day out.—JH