Monthly Archives: December 2014

How To Tackle Twitter Hashtag Hijacks?

It is a common trend in Twitter ecosystem where a brand’s hashtag is hijacked by people at large. What do I mean, by saying hashtag was hijacked? If a brand creates a hashtag to popularize a particular event or product or some major announcement and other Twitter users start referring that hashtag in some other context, I call it as ‘hijack’. Why do I call it as hijack? Primarily for two reasons – 1) As a brand, the digital marketing team would have spent hours to arrive at that hashtag after multiple rounds of screening. They would have tried to map the hashtag with brand’s value proposition. If that gets hijacked in some other contexts, the brand’s context gets affected. 2) When the brand’s digital team would be analyzing the success or failure of the Twitter hashtag campaign, the numbers would be inflated due to some irrelevant tweets that would get mapped into the hashtag. This would essentially result in erroneous ROI calculation.

Today Samsung Mobile was promoting Galaxy Note with hashtag #TheEdgeofBrilliance. Samsung went ahead with Promoted Trend property on Twitter, which costs somewhere around Rs.6.5 – 7 lakhs per day (at times large agencies manage to negotiate and get it for Rs. 3.5 – 4 lakhs per day). This was supported by a promoted tweet which highlighted the key messaging.


While I was browsing through the tweets around the campaign hashtag (#TheEdgeofBrilliance), I noticed some hijacking of hashtag as it happens with every other Twitter campaign. Some of the tweets that were clearly not talking about Samsung or the product (Galaxy Note) being promoted are highlighted below:

Samsung Galaxy Note

Samsung Galaxy Note

Samsung Galaxy Note

Samsung Galaxy Note

Samsung Galaxy Note

Samsung Galaxy Note

Apart from these hijacked instances some Twitter users also criticized Samsung regarding the timing for this campaign:

Samsung Galaxy Note

As a brand it is crucial to expect and plan to counter such instances. No brand would afford to have such hijacking instances deter their campaign objectives and expected ROI. Some of the simple steps that brands could try are following:

1) As it is said ‘well begun is half done’, the campaign hashtag should be carefully chosen and if possible brand name should be incorporated in the campaign hashtag so that it sends a clear message to audience. In situations where brands tend to go after simple hashtags, the chances of them getting hijacked increases substantially.

2) It is very essential to set up a hashtag listening track on some listening tool and continuously monitor every tweet around this hashtag. Ideally the team should employ multiple people to handle this manually and identify such hijacked tweets.

3) The team should reply and engage with these users tactically. The engagement should be so planned that the conversation gets diverted to the campaign objective.

4) In case of some criticism, it is extremely essential for brand to acknowledge the person and pacify him / her, because the chances of these tweets being spotted would be much more due to the high virality of hashtag during those campaign days.

If you have faced similar situation in the past, in interest of the larger audience share your tips in the comment section below.

Disclaimer: This blogpost is not intended to highlight and/or comment on the Samsung’s digital strategy. The mere purpose of this blogpost is educating the larger audience.

Content Marketing Strategy by Google India

The importance of Content Marketing has been done to death. But, fact of the matter is very few brands do it efficiently. In this blogpost, I am sharing the content marketing strategy that Google India has adopted in the past one year. Most of us have watched and admired the Google’s India-Pakistan reunion advertisement. I think many of us have lately also viewed two more videos highlighted in this blogpost. As a marketer / digital marketer / student have you tried to think through the reasons why Google invested behind these videos? Here are few questions to ponder upon – Why was Google focusing on India and creating videos on Indian centric themes? Are these videos going to impact the topline or the bottomline of Google? Will these videos help Google in strengthening its position in Indian markets? Are these videos centered just around Google’s products and services or something more? I hope once you read this blogpost, answers to most of these questions will be self-explanatory.

Now, let’s analyze three videos of Google:

Video 1: India – Pakistan reunion

As and when this blogpost was being written this video had already earned 12.4 million views since it was launched on 13th Nov’13.

I consider this video to be 50% focused on Google’s services (various features) while 50% focused on building emotional connect between the two countries that remain in state of tension for most of the time. The video very well captures various features like Google Search, Google Maps, Google Weather etc. that users can leverage. Most importantly video clearly establishes that these features are also available on mobile devices and its very user-friendly for users to find these information. There have been many reports that highlight that next wave of Internet penetration in India would come from Tier-2, 3 cities and we already have seen reports highlighting the fact that even e-commerce sales are increasing in these cities.

Video 2: Android One – Apni Kismat Apne Haath

As and when this blogpost was being written this video had already earned 2.1 million views since it was launched on 15th Sept’14.

This is another beautiful video were Google tries to boost the confidence of Indian youth population and sends across a strong message of ‘keep moving’ and attain all success in life. While the video also captures cultural diversity that exists in this vast country, the script has been very well crafted by incorporating city names like Dungarpur and Meerut. Hence, it is very well evident that the product that  Google tries to highlight ‘Android One’ is mainly positioned at Tier-2, Tier-3 cities and the brand is cognizant of local needs.

Video 3: #SpecialDelivery – Celebrating unsung heroes of online shopping

This latest video by Google is a fairly new but it has already earned lot of word of mouth. This was launched on 17th Dec’14 and already received over 0.4 million views.

Day in and day out we order various goods from all major and minor e-commerce players in the country. We thrash the player if they fail to deliver the product on time. However, as customers  have we ever thought who are those thousands of delivery men who enable this ecosystem. After I saw this ad, I felt did even e-commerce player ever had plans to thank their countless delivery men who ensure their supply chain doesn’t crash. But, there arrived the thought to Google. They capitalized on the opportunity and also simultaneously tried to fulfill their business objectives – 1) Create awareness about, 2) Entice more e-commerce players to join this festival in the next season, 3) Encourage end customers to shop during GOSF. Hence, I think this video is a classic effort by Google.

One common theme cuts across all three videos analyzed above. Gone are days when brands just focused on products / services to attain their objectives. In this Digitized World, brands need to step up their efforts and focus on how creatively they can leverage the Content Marketing aspects.

I will try to capture some more brands in future blogposts that have done well in this area. Stay tuned and yes don’t be lazy to share your thoughts / comments for me 🙂