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Successful examples of Newsjacking

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did you know that there is a practice widely used by brands that consists of news hijacking? It is about being aware of the trends and news that flutter around users, in order to get closer to our audience by making use of them.

In this post we show you some examples where well-known brands used their creativity and newsjacking to generate content and attract an audience.

what is newsjacking?

As we have already explained in previous posts, newsjacking is a marketing technique that consists of making use of trends and breaking news to create content with the aim of exposing and raising awareness of a brand.

Virality is a key concept for this technique. With the rise of social networks, it is sometimes very easy to spot what the trends are. What topics are the hot topics? You just need to be aware of them and start creating content. Of course, it is very important to be on time.

Once you've spotted what's trending, you need to find a way to relate the news to your brand without it being too forced. Ideally, users shouldn't be shocked by the way you use the news and it should come naturally without generating rejection.

It may even happen that the message launched by a brand has even more impact than the news itself. It's all about being original and reaching the audience. To show you how to apply newsjacking, we show you some examples of brands that have carried it out successfully.

6 trends that brands took advantage of to apply Newsjacking

1. The Davis Cup and the victory of the right wing in the Madrid elections

We start with one of the most recent examples, a Davis Cup promotion campaign that took advantage of the right-wing victory in the Madrid elections to place a huge billboard in the capital. Ayuso had just triumphed in the elections to the Community of Madrid a week ago and the Davis Cup final matches were about to start.

The poster, placed in Gran Vía on a 500 square metre canvas, read as follows: "In Madrid we are right-handed and backhanded. The Davis Cup is coming back". What a good idea, right? The controversial phrase immediately took the networks by storm and many media outlets echoed the news. Objective achieved.

As we mentioned in another post, it's not recommended to cover controversial topics. However, if the campaign is strong enough, causing a bit of controversy can be effective. After all, we want people to talk about us, don't we?

2. The stranding in the Suez Canal: Burger King and Desatranques Jaén

We suppose you remember the news that opened the news a few months ago: a ship running aground in the Suez Canal that revolutionised international trade. It was a recurring theme for jokes and memes on Twitter and Burger King didn't miss the opportunity to capitalise on it.

A container ship had run aground in the Suez Canal and Burger King Chile had come up with its next social media campaign. The brand launched an image in which one of its well-known burgers could be seen blocking the canal: "we made it too big", was the phrase that accompanied the original photograph.

In relation to this, a Spanish brand much smaller than the hamburger chain, but with a considerable army of followers on Twitter, also carried out its own Newsjacking campaign on the well-known social network: Desatranques Jaén, a plunger removal company that became famous for a video in which they congratulated Christmas with a very catchy song.

The brand, which is usually very active on Twitter, uploaded a montage in which it announced that it had taken one of its trucks to solve the problem of the Suez Canal. This shows that you don't have to be a large multinational to carry out a good strategy.

3. The confinement: Ikea and Ruavieja

If there was one piece of news that marked 2020 it was, without a doubt, the Coronavirus and everything it brought with it. Covid-19 locked us in our homes, us and the big brands, who didn't want to miss the opportunity to take advantage of the occasion to apply newsjacking and build stories based on the confinement and everything it entailed.

Sweden's IKEA opted for a campaign that accompanied the success of the hashtag #yomequedo at home: "Your home has something to tell you" was a spot that invited viewers to reconcile themselves with their home, to enjoy the activities they could do at home, to move the furniture around, etc. In this way, the brand gained notoriety by encouraging us to do what we should do: stay at home.

Ruavieja also took advantage of the confinement to launch one of the most emotional campaigns of the year: a video in which anonymous people who were confined to their homes in the middle of March were interviewed and asked the question: what will be the first thing you do when this is over?

4. Volkswagen and social distance

Another concept brought into our lives by the pandemic was social distance. Volkswagen launched a campaign in March 2020 in which it tried to raise awareness of this issue through a video that ended with the application of the safety distance in its own logo.

In addition, on the occasion of the summer campaign, the brand also knew how to use this still hot concept to launch a sweepstakes on social media: a giant towel to make sure you keep your distance from other people on the beach.


5. Lego and the dress that revolutionised the internet

Back in 2015, a photo of a white and gold dress - or was it black and blue? - revolutionised the internet and social networks. On one side were those who saw it as blue, on the other those who saw it as white, and on the other, there were the brands, trying to get in the middle of this dilemma to get a good dose of fame .

Lego, the well-known brand of building blocks for children and adults, posted an image on its social media in which it dressed two of its characters in both versions of the dress: "White and gold... black and blue? We've found an alternative to science - you can have both!"

6. Female driving in Saudi Arabia and the Ford vision

It was 2018 and the media announced the news that Saudi Arabia was allowing women to drive. The car brand Ford saw in this ad the perfect opportunity to launch a campaign with a nod to the news of the day. "Welcome to the driver's seat". Short and simple, yes, but effective.

Newsjacking does indeed work - and not just for big brands. Thanks to social media, it's becoming easier and easier to create content that can be accessed by thousands of people. Open your eyes and ears, don't let a single piece of news slip through the cracks and let Newsjacking creep into your marketing strategy. The opportunity you've been waiting for could be just around the corner.

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