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Top 5 Unconventional Brand Campaigns

June 1, 2009Sparxoo

brand strategies and marketing for entrepreneurs, startups and established businesses

Photo By Milena Stanishlevik from Stock.Xchng

By Ethan Lyon, Senior Writer

Many think that brand campaigns are nothing more than just ads on TV, print or online.  However, successful brand campaigns employ strategically brilliant marketing efforts that memorably connect the brand to its target audience.

Here are five brand campaigns that used unconventional marketing efforts to make a memorable impact:

1. Sea-Tagging
Biodegradable coffee cup sleeves, hybrid vehicles, consumer-friendly solar panels and many more products are ways in which we are collectively trying to quell human impact on the environment. What about advertising? Direct mail, business-to-business, print space add up to a lot of junk paper. SEA LIFE London Aquarium is doing the opposite of traditional advertising—they’re sea-tagging. Sea-tagging is the use of stencils and water (preferably salt because it lasts longer) on dry surfaces such as sidewalks or concrete walls. When sprayed on sidewalks, the designs fade away after 15-20 minutes. Sea-tagging is an innovative way for the London Aquarium to deliver an impactful message while increasing their eco-savvy brand identity.

2. Twapplication
Twitter has sparked innovative applications—from live chat on Ustream to Amazon Customer Reviews to GasCalc and many more. Energize, a Utrecht-based online marketing company, is using Twitter for job applications for a strategic planner and account manager positions in 140 characters or less.  The aptly named Twapplication leverages the company’s ability to think out-of-the-box on a usually boring process of finding applicants into a creative way to get publicity and bolster the brand’s creativity capabilities.

3. Foot Art to Street Art
Adidas has a strong brand image that speaks to its creativity and innovative approach to footwear. With the street-art locator app for the iPhone (called the Urban Art Guide), the brand sought to reach out to the lifestyle (psychographics) of its audience. Known for their unconventional viral initiatives, Adidas has truly established itself as the footwear for urban youth. It’s no surprise the iPhone app was their latest marketing move. As long as technology transforms the way we communicate, Adidas will have a creative presence.

4. Oil Production to Oil Conservation
The brand image of oil companies has been one difficult to shift from eco-destroyer to eco-promoter. Carpooling is the last thing you would think an oil production company would want to produce—as it means less oil consumption. Portugal’s largest oil and gas production company, Galp Energia developed a social network just for that. Galpshare, the name of the carpooling site, utilizes maps, users interest and direction to connect commuters and travelers.

5. Car Dealership Renting Bicycles
Everyone is familiar with the local car dealership. Their typically loud, in-you-face commercials and large props in front lot are a staple of most dealers’ marketing campaigns. Therefore, when someone says car dealership, it might conjure memories of big ballooned animals and yelling. That’s not Clive Brook’s Volvo dealership strategy. Quite the opposite, in fact. Instead of promoting their fleet of vehicles, they are loaning bicycles. Bicycle rentals are nothing new, particularly in Europe, but for an American car dealership to rent bicycles, that’s new. Though bicycle rental might not be Clive Brook’s bread and butter, it identifies the dealer’s brand with eco-friendly solutions, which will bolster their image in a ever-moving shift towards eco-sustainability.

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