Meet The GennY 2012 Finalists: Part 2

The GennY Award recognizes best practices of those who have applied new and innovative techniques to connect and communicate with youth. The 2012 award will be given to one exceptional marketing campaign at the Millennial Mega Mashup next week, but we want to highlight the finalists to showcase the unique ways they’ve Millennialized their marketing efforts to reach this influential generation.

Category: Social Media
Wattpad/Sony Music Group

Wattpad and Sony Music Group partnered for a "transmedia experiment" in fan fiction focused on the rising Brit boy band One Direction. One of Wattpad's star writers created a story about each of the five band members designed to coordinate with the video for the band's single, "What Makes You Beautiful." Launching on Valentine's Day, the five-chapter eBook leveraged the band's international fans on Wattpad to spread the word to new American fans by sharing the story and video. The campaign hit a fever pitch when the band members themselves posted a note on the group's Facebook page thanking their new Wattpad fans.

Ypulse: How did you select the author for the campaign telling One Direction’s backstory? When turning over a brand to an outside writer, it can make the company nervous…

Wattpad: Sony approached us about the project after noticing that fan fiction was becoming an organic trend among One Direction fans in the UK and Europe. They wanted to test the waters with an officially sanctioned story to see what kind of reaction, awareness, and affinity it could drive. They were also excited to use a writer from within the Wattpad community, someone who knew the Wattpad landscape and the ins and outs of our community, but of course it was really important to find someone they could trust with their brand.

We recommended LD Crichton because…

 
 

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The Newsfeed

Quote of the Day: “Retail should be a facilitator for experience, rather than just selling product.”—Sharmandean Reid, Founder, Wah Nails London (YPulse)

Millennials seeking portable booze are cracking open canned wine. Even though the category still only accounts for less than 1% of the Millennial-favorite alcoholic beverages’ market, Nielsen reports it spiked 69% last year and continues to gain ground. An exec at Delicato Family Wines explains, “Millennials have grown up in a world where consuming wine outdoors—or any location outside of the traditional table—is more acceptable than generations past.” (Wine Spectator)

Summer camps are cropping up to teach kids how to become YouTubers. At I-D Tech Camps, Level Up, and Star Camps, kids can learn all about how to, as the latter puts it, “Become an Internet sensation.” They offer courses in how to create and post videos, from shooting clips to editing audio, and how to build their personal brand. But don’t worry, most are framing YouTubing as a hobby, not a career, and setting kids’ expectations accordingly. (WSJ)

A new bill could change the free-to-play profit model that’s made games like Fortnite top earners. Senators have proposed the official ban of “loot boxes,” or items that players can buy (and sometimes must buy) to win a video game, often gambling on what’s inside. Senator Ed Markey explains that “Inherently manipulative game features that take advantage of kids and turn play time into pay time should be out of bounds.” For some, this will eliminate a key revenue stream and open the door to review other in-game purchases.  (The Verge)

A social media overhaul upped Corn Nuts’ sales by 12%—with no paid support.The snack’s sales were stagnant before a new exec took over their Twitter, infusing it with the personable tone food brands have become known for (and sometimes notorious for). Since then, followers spiked from 650 to 21,000, and what they’re calling a “scrappy” strategy “absolutely translated to sales,” reporting that retail sales spiked 12% and Millennials’ repeat purchases rose the same percentage. (Marketing Dive)

The retail apocalypse continues, with 7,000 more stores closing their doors in 2019. CoStar Group estimates that the square footage of retail space closed has topped its own record each year since 2017, and this year they’re “predicting more of the same.” PayLess ShoeSource, Gymboree, Dressbarn, and Charlotte Russe lead the list of number stores planned to shutter this year, as retailers learn to scale down size and up Experiencification for young shoppers. (Business Insider

Quote of the Day: “It’s a really interesting time at the moment in catalog [music]…Sometimes, it’s a question of how we make something out of nothing.”—Tim Fraser-Harding, President, Global Catalogue, Recorded Music at Warner Music Group (Rolling Stone)

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