The best digital campaigns in France in 2016


Best Digital Campaigns 2016 in France

If you ask most people which were last year’s highlights, they’ll probably tell you all about the Brexit, Donald Trump’s victory at the US presidential elections, Leonardo DiCaprio finally receiving an Oscar, or the revival of Pokémon Go. However, if there is no doubt 2016 was filled with memorable events, marketing nerds will certainly add some more elements to the list: digital campaigns. As most companies have (finally) understood the importance of content marketing for their brand notoriety, they always try to find new ways to connect with their audience. Today, we’ve decided to ask our French PR & Marketing nerd Soline Demenois to tell us all about the digital campaigns which have shaped her country in 2016. And cherry on top: she managed to find some insight on their impact on the brand’s notoriety. Vous êtes prêts?!  

L’Ami Ricoré puts a smile on you every morning

L'Ami Ricoré Example of a messenger text

L’Ami Ricoré Campaign 2016

You’ve never heard of Ricoré? This instant coffee brand has, however, managed to establish itself as a powerful brand in France since its launch in 1953: more than one billion cups of Ricoré are drunk every year in the country. A big part of the coffee’s success finds its root in its 1980’s advertising stories, where it hammered home the message of being « L‘ami du petit déjeuner » (The breakfast friend). In 2016, the brand stood out in French media by offering a unique service to its consumers — L’Ami Ricoré. Hard to put you in a good mood in the morning? Well, not anymore! Start a Facebook Messenger conversation with L’Ami Ricoré, and tell your new buddy at what time you are usually setting your alarm up. From now on, every morning, the Messenger bot will wake you up with a funny message (cute pandas, crazy dances, or whatever content that will put a smile on you). This ingenious service was introduced through the use of a very short clip promoted online to journalists as well as on social media. Check out the video here, and see if you can manage not to smile:

The heartbreaking campaign against animal abandon by the 30 Millions d’Amis Foundation

Sad looking dog with "He will never abandon you" banner

30 Millions d’Amis Campaign 2016

Each year around summertime, the 30 Millions d’Amis foundation fights against people abandoning their pets before their upcoming vacations (more than 60,000 animals are abandoned in France every summer). This is why the charity decided, in 2016, to promote a very emotional video on various channels including internet, social media and TV; aiming at showing the “paradox between the cowardice of some human beings who are able to abandon their pets and the total loyalty of animals”, according to the foundation. While the beginning of the video shows a dog looking after its owner at the hospital, various flashbacks reveal how the animal actually followed its owner and got him out of danger after his car crash, whereas this one had actually abandoned the dog in the woods. This powerful clip ends with a deep message “He will never abandon you”. Did people really restrain from abandoning their dogs after they saw this spot? It’s hard to tell. But one thing is sure: the campaign benefited from a lot of media coverage and records more than 5,000,000 views on YouTube. Dog lover or not, the chances of you being insensitive to this video is nearly impossible:

#Marcourien, the campaign which managed to make people change their names

Marc ou rien campaign banner

Marc ou Rien Campaign 2016

On another (and kinkier) note, the French producer of adult erotic films Marc Dorcel was on everyone’s lips in 2016…or actually on everyone’s Facebook account! On April 25th –in honor of the Saint Marc—the marketing team of the Dorcel Club (aka the platform on which people can watch all the producer’s movie sets) had the idea of offering 60 days of free access to its website to all the people whose name was Marc on Facebook. To promote this campaign called Marc ou Rien (Marc or Nothing), the brand used an erotic actress who explained in a 50-second video, how to benefit from this offer. The campaign was so successful that the offer was extended to everyone who was claiming his or her name was Marc in their daily lives, as soon as they showed it by posting photos or videos of their efforts on social media, with the hashtag #MarcOuRien. They even declared on twitter that parents who would name their newborns Marc would get free access for LIFE! Of course, the brand was not giving free access to the Dorcel Club out of the goodness of its heart: it was a huge hit in terms of visibility! Only 48 hours after the launch of the campaign, 25,000 Marcs registered to the Dorcel Club via Facebook connect, and the website’s traffic had increased by 4 times. One month later, the brand’s Facebook account had gained 5,000 fans and the hashtag #MarcouRien had been used more than 4,000 times on twitter! Some people may have regretted their parents didn’t name them Marc…

Like my addiction on Instagram

Fake Instagram Account of Louise Delage

Instagram – Louise Delage – Addict’ Aide Campaign 2016

In France, addictions account for 1 death out of 5. However, it’s not really easy to detect that a loved one actually is an addict, as the ability to step back from such a situation is rather complicated. To put this into perspective, the organization Addict’ Aide, which sought to raise awareness of alcoholism among young people, set up a very well-orchestrated digital campaign. The organization created a fake Instagram account for Louise Delage, a 25- year-old Parisian woman who seemed to enjoy life. Within 1 month and a half, Louise’s posts generated more than 50,000 likes and gained 7,500 followers. People seemed to like Louise’s lifestyle—but missed a very important thing: the presence of alcohol in about all her Instagram posts. As in real life, only a few people were able to take a step back on the situation, and thus failed to notice that Louise was actually an alcoholic. The trick was revealed in a video which put one post after the other in a scary hyper lapse and with this conclusion: “it’s easy to miss a loved one’s addiction”. Through this original and yet striking campaign, Addict’ Aide was able to make people realize that addicts need the help of their loved ones. Without investing one single euro, the organization generated more than 500,000 views on different channels as well as a large number of articles on French and international media. Touché!

An SEO-focused Retail Therapy for Ikea

Ikea Retail Therapy Campaign 2016

Ikea Retail Therapy Campaign 2016

Before you say anything, we know what you’re going to say: yes, Ikea isn’t French! However, the last digital campaign made by the Swedish company was so applauded in France that we could not –not talk about it…Indeed, this Retail therapy invented by Ikea generated coverage everywhere in France and all around Europe in general. In case you would have missed it, here is a little recap: considering that people usually ask google the response to their relationship problems (such as “how to know if he loves me” or “she can’t make up her mind”), Ikea’s marketing team identified the most googled searches related to family problems and couples’ crisis in Sweden. And that’s when the genius comes: they then renamed each of their products according to these searches. A world map poster is thus named “Find a way back to each other”, an oven, “How to get a girl to like you”, or an animal-shaped LED light becomes “My son is afraid of the dark”. Finally, they bid on these products’ names on Adwords, thus making their products appear first when people google such issues. Offering an immediate solution to a problem which usually doesn’t have one, the Retail Therapy is the proof that if coupled with a funny touch, a smart idea can become viral and boost traffic on your website.

Despite the fact that all these campaigns were promoted via videos, it doesn’t mean that it’s the only way a digital campaign can become viral. Infographics, pictures and social media are other ways which can enable you to reach out to your users and to attract new ones. However, if you decide to choose video for your next campaign, check out of blogpost on the 5 things to keep in mind before your first online video marketing campaign.


|By Soline Demenois – Brand & Content Manager France|


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