Photo Op Marketing: 3 Brands Giving Millennials the Perfect Social Media Shot

The latest marketing trend is all about creating the perfect picture. Brands are setting up photo opportunities in stores, pop-ups, and major marketing campaigns, giving Millennials everything they need to take the best shot to share on social media…

These days restaurants are being designed to include Instagrammable scenery, packaging, and dishes; Fashion Week shows are being created to include that one photographable display; and museums are embracing exhibits that look good on the mobile screen and encouraging social sharing. Finding a way to get your brand onto Millennials’ social media feeds has become a key tactic across industries. Last year, we spotted the rising trend of Instagrammable events—immersions created to be a series of photo-op worthy moments, and the ultimate social media-sharing experiences. Refinery 29’s 29 Rooms and the brand-sponsored Museum of Ice Cream (now in LA) were created to be fun, of course, but more than anything they gave visitors chance after chance to take the perfect picture to stand out on social.

Now, we’re seeing this photo-op approach spread into more areas, and marketing campaigns and stores alike set themselves up to provide photo op inspiration. Sunglass Hut is luring Millennials in-store with the promise of the perfect selfie. The brand’s new Melbourne flagship offers face-shape matching and styling services in a space designed to create a photo-worthy moment. The focus of the location, the “bling wall,” is made up of 150 dancing LEDs to light up selfies that young consumers are encouraged to share on social media. Here are three more brands designing photo-ops to give Millennials everything they need to take a shot to share on social media:

Magnum’s Designed-For-Instagram NYC Pop-Up

The perfect food pic is a status symbol on social…

 
 

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The Newsfeed

“As a graphic designer, without the arts being available to me in school I would have been lost as a child and where to take my career path. The fact that schools are cutting art programs is heartbreaking.”—Female, 24, NJ

Applebee’s is putting down the sriracha and giving up on trying to appeal to Millennials. The brand has decided their newer menu items—like a “triple pork bonanza” sandwich—and attempt at a “modern bar and grill” reinvention has “alienate[d]” Boomers and Gen Xers. They’re shutting down more than 130 restaurants and bringing back initiatives from before their attempted “pendulum swing towards millennials,” all-you-can-eat specials and 2-for-$20 deals. Other brands are creating new spin off chains to appeal to fast-casual lovingMillennials, that “[lack] the associated baggage of the old.” (Inc, NPR)

Adults-only ball pits, bouncy houses, and giant slides are sweeping the U.K. Millennials seeking a break from adulthood are flocking to places like Wacky World’s “massive bouncy-castle obstacle course,” which started out as a children’s event. The founder received so many requests that now every event has an 18-and-over slot, and has expanded to 19 cities. This “trend for arrested development activities” is caused by nostalgia, but the influx of marketing and branding leveraging the emotion could be popularizing these playgrounds for adults. (The Guardian)

Facebook is responding to the trend of asking for birthday charitable donations by integrating it right into the platform. Users in the U.S. can now trade in all the “HBD”s they get on Facebook for donations to the cause of their choice: well-wishers will be notified of the birthday along with the selected non-profit, and get the chance to donate. Facebook will ask users which charity they wish to dedicate their day to two weeks in advance, allowing them to choose from 750,000 organizations. (TNW)

Appear Here is the Airbnb of pop-up shops, giving brands their perfect temporary store for the new era of retail. The company finds short term retail space, and has worked with big-name brands like Nike and Net-a-Porter to open “experimental activations” or “test new products.” As brick-and-mortar continues to suffer and long-term stores close, Appear Here says physical retail is still needed, but to “tell a story.” The pop-up industry was valued at $50 billion in 2015, and provides a more low-risk, flexible option to avoid the retail wasteland. (Glossy)

Millennials & Gen Z are turning a profit online and on mobile by re-selling their retail. Thredup, Poshmark, and Depop are just a few of the most popular brands cashing in on the resale economy’s $18 billion market, and some shoppers say they are making $300 a week on the platforms. Some are also using social to sell, often in conjunction with apps or sites, including Snapchat, Facebook Groups, and Instagram. College students on a budget are reportedly especially drawn to resale, thanks to convenience, value, and access to luxury at a lower price. (FN)

“Adult means being entirely independent. I pay my own bills, make all decisions in my life, and feel very in control.”—Male, 20, NY

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