Social media marketing is not as easy as just posting content regularly. It takes a lot more than that. And, that is precisely the reason why some brands do much better than others on social media.
The brands that have nailed their social media marketing know that the secret to success on social media is knowing your audience and targeting them effectively. So, you don’t just need to post regularly, but also ensure that your content is relevant to your audience.
And, if you look at the most successful social media marketing examples, you will see that the common theme is content that resonates with the target audience. So, let’s take a closer look at some of the best social media marketing examples to fuel your 2023 social media strategy.
Social Media Marketing Examples 2023:
- 1. Airbnb - Supported Ukrainians
- 2. HBO - "House of the Dragon" Campaign
- 3. Netflix - "Wednesday" Campaign
- 4. Zoom - Logo Redesign
- 5. Starbucks - “Energy That’s Good” Campaign
- 6. Dove - #DetoxifyYourFeed Campaign
- 7. British Army’s - “Nothing Can Do What a Soldier Can Do” Campaign
- 8. Gillette - #SayPubic Campaign
- 9. Virgin Group - Dyslexic Thinking campaign
- 10. Epson - Arctic Greening Awareness Campaign
- 11. Duolingo - "Adoption Center" campaign
- 12. National Westminster Bank (NatWest) - Take 5 Anti-Fraud Campaign
- 13. Swoop - This Beach is a Coupon Campaign
- 14. Firehouse Subs - Rewards Week
- 15. Corona Beer - The Plastic Letter Campaign
- Frequently Asked Questions
1. Airbnb - Supported Ukrainians
What They Did Right - Supported a cause to win consumer trust and boost their brand image.
After accommodating thousands of COVID-19 responders in 2020, Airbnb made a quick and heartwarming gesture to help Ukrainians amid its conflict with Russia in 2022.
The company extended free, short-term housing to 100,000 refugees fleeing Ukraine via the Airbnb.org Refugee Fund, which has been connecting other displaced groups from Afghanistan, Syria, and Venezuela to temporary homes through Airbnb.org partners.
In a series of tweets, CEO Brian Chesky explained the various ways the public can help, from hosting to giving donations.
1. Airbnb and https://t.co/enqjlQB0rH are working with our Hosts to house up to 100,000 refugees fleeing from Ukraine, for free
— Brian Chesky (@bchesky) February 28, 2022
Over 48,000 hosts from 160 countries and regions heeded the call to host Ukrainians, while donations came from 95 nations.
Meanwhile, Airbnb customers worldwide booked accommodations although they didn't stay in the rented units. What started as a sign of solidarity among travel vloggers with Ukraine-based hosts spread like wildfire in social media. Hosts earned $1.9 million as the platform received more than 61,400 bookings in 48 hours.
News outlets reported that donors experienced greater connection and transparency when they reached out to provide direct financial help to an identifiable individual or family instead of relief organizations. Others have warned that donors may unknowingly support big-time property managers or Russian investors. Airbnb has advised bookers to read reviews about hosts with a Ukraine address and check their history with the platform before booking.
2. HBO - "House of the Dragon" Campaign
What They Did Right - Engaged viewers on the world’s most popular social platform to build up and sustain interest in its top-grossing series.
HBO reportedly spent a year planning its marketing strategy for the "Game of Thrones" (GOT) prequel "House of the Dragon" to ensure that it would live up to the fame of its predecessor. The show's team launched the official GOT TikTok account in April 2021, coinciding with the "Iron Anniversary" to celebrate 10 years since the program's premiere. In October 2021, HBO released a teaser for the prequel, while the social media department expanded the TikTok account to include HOTD, which started airing in August 2022.
Speaking at the Variety x TikTok Culture Catalysts Dinner in November 2022, HBO bosses were among the panelists that acknowledged TikTok's crucial role in sustaining the show's high ratings during the first season. Content creator "Fantastic" Frankey Smith said that the platform's stitch and duet features, which allow users to display another video or a video from another account during their broadcast, made it easy for fans to share and react to episodes together.
@sydneymorningherald Can House of the Dragon, the Game of Thrones prequel, recreate the magic of the original series at its peak? Meg Watson answers a few more basic ones to help you figure out if you should bother watching. Read a full recap via the link in bio. #HouseOfTheDragon #GOT #hotd #gameofthrones #tvrecommendations ♬ Game of Thrones - Ladynsax
Cast members also boosted viewership as they uploaded light-hearted content about their interests. For instance, in one TikTok video that has since gone viral, Emma D'Arcy told co-actor Olivia Cooke about their drink of choice: negroni sbagliato with prosecco.
@hbomax I'll take one of each. #houseofthedragon ♬ a negroni sbagliato w prosecco l hbo max - hbomax
3. Netflix - "Wednesday" Campaign
What They Did Right - Applied new series' dark humor into the social and traditional marketing mix.
Netflix extended Halloween to Christmas Time to bolster its new series "Wednesday," a spin-off from “The Addams Family.” The streaming service's marketing team combined stunt marketing, billboards, and social media to prepare the Netflix crowd for Wednesday Addams, the oldest daughter of Gomez and Morticia Addams played by actress Jenna Ortega (Scream 5, X, and American Carnage). Uploaded on YouTube is the release of the "Thing"—a disembodied hand who does duties for the family and is Wednesday's companion in the series—in the streets of New York, capturing the startled reactions of pedestrians and commuters.
Netflix also uploaded a photo of the Thing on its Twitter account as it held onto a subway handrail. The message on the image says, "Hang in There." Meanwhile, the official Wednesday Addams Twitter account featured a photo of the main character drenched in blood and the caption: "I love to start my weekends with a good blood bath." Netflix activated the account in June.
for anyone struggling before the holiday break pic.twitter.com/xIjB30ifSO
— Netflix Geeked (@NetflixGeeked) November 30, 2022
I love to start my weekends with a good blood bath. pic.twitter.com/5FG8mDc5hQ
— Wednesday Addams (@wednesdayaddams) December 3, 2022
"Wednesday" started airing in November 2022. The show's 1.19 billion viewer hours for its first 28 days make it a close contender to the new season of "Stranger Things," whose viewers clocked 1.35 billion hours.
4. Zoom - Logo Redesign
What They Did Right - Refreshed the brand’s look to broaden its business communication relevance.
Bring teams together, reimagine workspaces, engage new audiences, and delight your customers –– all on the Zoom platform you know and love. 💙
See how we’re evolving with a ✨fresh✨ look and new product innovations: https://t.co/WKUJXtMOur pic.twitter.com/nm0Us6SvJt
— Zoom (@Zoom) September 12, 2022
Zoom's logo underwent a makeover to highlight the brand's identity as a full-fledged collaboration platform, not just a video-conferencing app. The branding refresh was the most strategic campaign it conducted to stay relevant in 2022 as more schools and businesses restored in-office and in-person meetings and operations. The move also intended to help Zoom keep in step with its rivals Slack, Microsoft Teams, Miro, and others.
The extra O's between letters Z and M (six O's in all) contain one graphic for each of the services under Zoom One's full suite: Team Chat (formerly Zoom Chat), phone, meetings, rooms, events, and contact center.
The company’s new products for this year include the new whiteboard, an omnichannel contact center for personalized customer support, and its customer conversation analysis tool, Zoom IQ for sales.
5. Starbucks - “Energy That’s Good” Campaign
What They Did Right - Piggybacked on the popularity of a post-pandemic trend.
To support the launch of Starbucks' vitamin C-infused energy drink, Baya, the company pulled in actor, singer, and "Dancing with the Stars" winner Jordan Fisher to head The Energy Makers Lab.
The campaign harnesses the power of influencers in promoting Baya to a young audience that has become more health-conscious after the COVID-19 aftermath. Members of the Lab are known for their "feel-good" content, matching the message of the new energy beverage. Besides Fisher, also a Twitch streamer and TikTok user, the Lab includes award-winning AI and augmented reality director Karen X Cheng, vibraphone musician Justin Vibes, digital effects artist Cache Bunny, graphic artist and photographer Tommy Lundberg, and designer-illustrator Lauren Hom. The team members all have a robust Instagram following.
Besides forming the Energy Makers, Starbucks also tapped the Energy BBDO ad agency to create a 30-second film as the flagship content of its 360 marketing effort for Baya titled "Energy That’s Good."
Apart from TV and social media exposure, the company held a nationwide sampling tour, which ran in the spring and summer of 2022 to heighten the visibility and authenticity of Baya.
6. Dove - #DetoxifyYourFeed Campaign
What They Did Right - Focused on a Cause That Resonates With Their Audience.
Dove is a brand that has always focused on social causes in their social media campaigns. And these are especially centered around women’s empowerment, inclusion, diversity, and breaking beauty stereotypes. Women are their key target customers and that is why Dove’s marketing campaigns mostly target women.
In their latest campaign, Dove showed how influencers could acquire as much authority as parents in young girls' lives, particularly in molding their beliefs about beauty and identity. The #DetoxYourFeed campaign aimed at more than exposing toxic beauty advice on social media. Dove encouraged mothers to promote their daughters' self-esteem through open communication and healthy social media habits, including “unfollowing personalities who advocate harmful practices, such as cosmetic surgery and unrealistic beauty standards.
To stress their point, the company invited some mother-daughter pairs to view beauty-related content from social media feeds before showing a clip wherein the invited mother speaks in favor of a questionable beauty tip, such as baby Botox. Dove used deepfake technology to show mothers how social media advice can powerfully convince young followers about how they should look or solve supposed issues about their appearance.
1 in 2 girls say toxic beauty advice on social media causes low self-esteem. Help #DetoxYourFeed with the Dove Self-Esteem Project. Build body confidence and self-esteem in young people through educational programs. #LetsChangeBeauty
— Dove (@Dove) April 23, 2022
Dove called on social media users to use the #DetoxYourFeed hashtag to share their experiences on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok. The campaign also featured survey results wherein one in two girls said that social media content featuring beauty stereotypes lowered their self-esteem. Meanwhile, seven in 10 girls felt better after they stopped following creators of such content.
7. British Army’s - “Nothing Can Do What a Soldier Can Do” Campaign
What They Did Right - Specific Audience Targeting with Emotional Messaging.
The British Army seriously noted the public fear created by news that robots may take over the armed forces by 2030. In a previous interview, then Armed Forces Chief General Sir Nick Carter mentioned that 30,000 or about a quarter of the projected 120,000-strong army by that time "might be robots, who knows?"
For its new recruitment campaign, the army emphasized that soldiers will remain its most valuable asset, using the tagline "Nothing Can Do What a Soldier Can Do" even as it showed off its technological advancements, including robotics and cyber intelligence. The army’s Instagram post features the #FutureArmy hashtag and this message: "As the Army becomes more advanced, technology will help us do incredible things. But nothing can do what a soldier can do." Meanwhile, "Nothing can think how a soldier can think" is the additional line in the Facebook version of the campaign. Both posts include links to the army's application webpage.
Assistant Director for Recruiting Colonel Nick Mackenzie said that the hero ad hopes to convey that the judgment and intelligence of soldiers will remain indispensable to the army, no matter how technologically innovative it becomes. The closing text of the one-minute video encapsulates the thought: "The Army of the future still needs you."
8. Gillette - #SayPubic Campaign
What They Did Right - Video marketing and social messaging.
Riding on the success of its 2021 #SayPubic campaign, which sought to de-stigmatize the term, Gillette Venus again hired rapper Destiny Nicole Frasqueri aka Princess Nokia to help introduce new additions to the company's line of women's intimate care shaving products.
The brand's social media channels feature a video of Frasqueri's song "It's Time to Care (For Your Pubic Hair)" in posts promoting the Venus Gentle Trimmer and Venus Hair + Skin Softening Oil. Gillette says that it developed the products following observations that not many women's grooming products were specifically designed or formulated for the pubic area.
Princess Nokia, a known female empowerment champion, also composed and sang "The Pube Song" for the 2021 marketing ad.
The idea for the campaign follows the results of research and the marketing team's experience concerning the mention of the word "pubic." Only 18% of US women feel comfortable using the term, even if half of the survey respondents agree that using anatomical terms like pubic helps describe the body more accurately.
9. Virgin Group - Dyslexic Thinking campaign
What They Did Right - Redefined a learning disability into a marketable skill.
Virgin Group and Made by Dyslexia (MBD) changed the narrative on dyslexia by highlighting the strengths of people with this disability—a move that convinced LinkedIn to include "dyslexic thinking" among its account holders' skill sets.
With founder Richard Branson, who battled dyslexia as a youth, spearheading the campaign, the term has acquired a new meaning as a sought-after trait in the workplace. Virgin and MBD also co-produced a film with the same title, celebrating the talent and creativity of other dyslexics like Branson. They include Beethoven, the Wright Brothers, Agatha Christie, Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, and Keira Knightley.
Also helping with the mind shift is Dictionary.com, which ran an accreditation process to include the phrase in its listing.
The Little Black Book (LBB) noted that positive mentions about dyslexia on social media rose by 1,562%, while negative mentions plunged by 4,450% after the campaign's March 2022 launch. Meanwhile, over 10,000 LinkedIn users added "dyslexic thinking" as a skill. As a result, more employers—including Facebook, Microsoft, HSBC, and Ernst and Young—look out for candidates with this skill.
So pleased over 10,000 people have added #DyslexicThinking to their list of skills on their @LinkedIn profile in the last week. This film shows just some of the ways #DyslexicThinking has helped in moving the world forward. pic.twitter.com/4O06Renbl1
— Richard Branson (@richardbranson) April 12, 2022
LBB added that over 250 major publications worldwide covered the campaign, drawing an earned media value of over £1.5 million or $1.8 million.
10. Epson - Arctic Greening Awareness Campaign
What They Did Right - Teamed up with advocates in other media to promote global warming awareness.
Epson worked with ecologist and National Geographic explorer Dr. Isla Myers-Smith to widen publicity about the "greening of the Arctic." The scientist's research focuses on how the thawing of permafrost at the North Pole has led to the fast growth of Arctic vegetation, which increases carbon dioxide emissions.
This 2022 collaboration builds on Epson's 2021 campaign, which promoted the heat-free technology used for its printers.
In its Facebook post, Epson highlighted Dr. Myers-Smith's belief that "small changes" in people's daily lives can positively impact the environment, including the Arctic region. The University of Edinburgh professor has spent nearly 20 years studying how climate change has altered the Arctic tundra.
The company's social media posts about the campaign have a link to its webpage explaining how its inkjet printers use no-heat Piezo ink ejection, unlike other inkjet machines that use thermal heat to release the ink. Epson showed how laser products use the most heat for printing. The explainer also said that its Piezo ink ejection method involves lower power use compared to other processes.
11. Duolingo - "Adoption Center" campaign
What They Did Right - Emphasized accessibility amid tighter subscription management trend.
Let's all welcome Hooty to my family plan! 🦉🏡
Looking to channel Hooty and get adopted into a Duolingo family plan? Make your flyer: https://t.co/L16RlPvDLl
Have extra room in *your* family plan? Scroll through #DuolingoAdoptionCenter and find someone awesome to add! https://t.co/57rDsg1j8L
— Duolingo (@duolingo) September 22, 2022
Duolingo set up an "adoption center" to increase its Family Plan subscriber base. The company's goal was to encourage interested foreign language learners to take the spare slots in Duolingo's family package, which grants access to up to six family members.
The campaign hoped to win customers amid the offer’s stark contrast with what’s allowed in other service providers. For instance, Netflix imposes extra fees to allow password sharing.
Learners complete 2x more lessons per day after joining a Duolingo Family Plan.
Yet, not all Family Plans have all 6 spots filled.
The #DuolingoAdoptionCenter is here to fix that. Learn more when you learn together. 🤝
— Duolingo (@duolingo) September 20, 2022
To find prospective adoptees more quickly, Duolingo worked with an agency to tap 50 people to go around New York City's streets with a sign saying "Please adopt me." Strangers they interacted with can then scan the QR code on their signage to land on duolingoadoptioncenter.com. In general, the site allows people to create a flyer that they can share on Twitter and other social media so that current Duolingo family plan subscribers with lacking members can adopt them.
12. National Westminster Bank (NatWest) - Take 5 Anti-Fraud Campaign
What They Did Right - Sharing fraud prevention tips to improve the brand's credibility.
NatWest took to social media to bring the UK government's drive against financial scammers to the web-immersed population.
Known for its clever audience targeting, the London-based retail and commercial bank has regularly posted tips on Facebook and Instagram throughout 2022 on how to detect scams.
Examples of topics include warnings for direct debit refund schemes and sales of "unbelievably" low-priced luxury items. The social media posts would either summarize tips or feature links to NatWest's webpage where it discusses the advice further.
In time for Halloween, BAFTA-nominated actor Simon Callow ("Notting Hill," "Shakespeare in Love,” and "Four Weddings and a Funeral") joined the campaign, narrating real-life horror stories of fraud victims featured in NatWest's book: "Scammer House of Horrors." Facebook posts about this illustrated collection of scam tales direct followers to the bank's webpage containing the PDF version of the book and videos showing Callow narrating each of the three chapters.
13. Swoop - This Beach is a Coupon Campaign
What They Did Right - Reinvented the "limited offer" concept via live-streamed "coupon".
Canadian budget carrier Swoop put a fresh spin on offering time-sensitive sales by etching a giant "coupon" on the sands of a Mexican beach and holding a Facebook Live to promote its 60% discount on fares to Mexico.
Businesses typically use a countdown timer for such deals. However, the airline wanted an impactful way to attract bookings amid fierce competition from more popular operators.
Swoop invited its Facebook followers to book a flight before the tide washed out the coupon drawn in the sand, a timeframe that spanned about three hours. The marketing ploy, held during the weekdays, boosted sales and gave followers a preview of the destination. Bookings were 80% higher than what it typically recorded during the promo period.
14. Firehouse Subs - Rewards Week
What They Did Right - Used social media to announce hints for winning rewards in celebration of the restaurant's anniversary.
For Firehouse Sub's seventh anniversary, the submarine sandwich chain lined up exclusive offers and bonus points deals and announced them on their official Facebook page. These rewards varied from day to day. Diners had to download and sign up on the restaurant's app to become eligible.
To earn bonus points, Firehouse Subs posted instructions on social media about where app members can search for the promo code on their website and how to key it into the app.
The campaign strengthened engagement, customer loyalty, and support for their donation drive to help fire rescue teams besides increasing exposure to their line of sandwiches and other menu items.
15. Corona Beer - The Plastic Letter Campaign
What They Did Right – Applied open letter approach for the brand’s sustainability pitch.
After achieving a "net-zero plastic footprint", Corona Beer took its environmental conservation efforts further by producing a short film titled "Imagine a World Free of Plastic."
Set on Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula, the production features a "letter" that encourages the public to recycle plastic products and keep these items from beachfronts and other bodies of water. Volunteers dug sand to form the words, then filled up the space with trash collected from the beach—bottles, bottle caps, and other materials made of fabric or rubber.
The six-sentence plea was followed with these lines: "These words are written in ocean plastic. They could go on forever. But words won't solve anything." At the bottom of the letter is the company's logo and protectparadise.com, a link that directs internet users to Corona Beer's sustainability page.
The video closed with a message that people gathered 494 kilograms of plastic waste for the "letter" and they later underwent recycling. Links to Corona's Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook accounts appear in the production uploaded on YouTube.
The beermaker has investments in the Mexico Recicla recycling plant. In 2019, the brewery launched the Pay With Plastic program. Corona used its social channels to invite customers to exchange plastic waste for beer in bars and retailers in selected countries.
These are some of the most effective social media marketing examples of 2022 that you can take inspiration from. These brands have learned the secret to social media marketing success and you can learn from their strategies.
Check out the social media pages of these brands to see what they are doing and how they are winning the social media race. Use these insights to formulate your own social media marketing strategy and achieve your marketing goals.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are examples of social media marketing?
Social media marketing, or SMM, uses social media and social networks like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to promote products and services. Through social media marketing, you can engage with existing customers and reach new potential customers.
What are the 6 types of social media marketing?
What are the 6 types of social media? The 6 types of social media include social networking, bookmarking, social news, media sharing, microblogging, and online forum sites.
What are the 6 examples of social media?
These are 6 key examples of social media:
What are the 5 Pillars of social media marketing?
These are the 5 pillars of social media marketing:
- Planning and publishing
- Listening and engagement
- Analytics and reporting