When marketing works, it finds trends that provide opportunities for brands. The resulting innovation in marketing means looking for the “next big thing”. Social marketing puts social customers’ needs on the same level as those of the company, resulting in win-win arrangements with society.
Trendwatching fascinates its audience by detecting the novelties that accompany consumers’ insatiable desire to try new things — also known as Newism. The following are some of the innovations linked to social-marketing trends that were highlighted in the most recent Trendwatching report:
- Consumers’ changing mobile attitudes. In the Philippines, fast-food players McDonald’s and Coca-Cola have launched BFF Timeout. This app rewards users for putting away their smartphones while they are hanging out with friends. Results are posted publicly on a leaderboard.
- Consumers expect brands to contribute to social progress. This year, a Unilever-owned brand of cleaning products called Cif launched Clean Romania, an initiative to remove racist graffiti. Using a specific app, users can upload photos of racist graffiti. The brand then dispatches clean-up teams and posts “before” and “after” photos online.
- Brands are making requests of their consumers. During the launch of The Walking Dead, Fox Portugal gave away promotional merchandise in exchange for donated blood. The initiative was a pop-up store organised in collaboration with the local blood bank.
- Brands are prioritising customer needs. The Brazilian suncare brand Sol de Janeiro trained 450 tattoo artists to interpret skin lesions and the basic signs of skin cancer. They explain the symptoms to their customers and advise them to see a dermatologist for a full diagnosis.
- Inefficiencies in our current systems are being targeted. PareUp launched a mobile app that enables restaurants and grocery stores to offer consumers food would otherwise be thrown away. Discounted prices give consumers more for less and help to reduce food waste, thereby creating win-win situations.
Does it look like marketing? Does it work? Does it create social value?