Lockdown 3.0 is upon us and we’re likely to see similar restrictions in place for the foreseeable future. The latest halt to everyday life is sparking plenty of ad campaigns with brands taking full advantage of the buzz. We describe this as trend-jacking – capitalising on a current, trending event to boost brand presence in the marketplace. Done right, well-produced timely content can boost engagement. Done wrong and the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) could make life difficult…
With that in mind, we’ve looked at lockdown advertising and put together an example of the best (and worst!) instances of trend-jacking during the pandemic; highlighting their impacts to help educate people in proper advertising etiquette across social media.
Best ad; Apple – Creativity Goes On
Apple’s message of hope resonates with us, especially because the team spends a lot of time staying creative at home. With us all cooped up, creative minds need a way to express themselves. Creativity also brings us together and Apple does a great job of putting this across. The tech giants show the importance of family, support, and the role their products play in helping our creative juices flow during lockdown. The creativity must go on! It’s more than possible by drawing pictures on Ipads and creating videos on MacBooks – whilst using FaceTime to brainstorm exciting project ideas!
The ad features celebrities including John Krasinski, working on his YouTube show #SomeGoodNews, and Oprah Winfrey on Apple TV+ via #OprahTalks. The use of influencers, coupled with hopeful messaging on the back of a serious trend boosts Apple’s brand image and marketplace positioning ten-fold.
Worst ad; Ryanair – Jab & Go
Ryanair are in some hot water. Their ‘Jab & Go’ advert went down like a tonne of bricks at launch on Boxing Day in response to the coronavirus vaccine. After initially saying vaccines were not needed to travel with them (yes, they said that!), they then flipped the switch in even further bad taste, telling people to ‘jab and go’. Great timing, right? With the UK under strict travel bans, this goes against government guidelines… yikes!
It’s a desperately crass move to get people to pre-book their holidays, which indicates they’re in some financial trouble. This poor lockdown advertising is an example of trend-jacking done wrong. It has sparked an inquiry from the ASA. Ryanair are no stranger to these muddy waters, with numerous reprimands from the ASA in the past. The ill-timed campaign clashes with government guidelines, as such, the ASA are currently reviewing the case and will adjudicate in due course. This is due to thousands of complaints, with comments like “disgusting” and “insensitive” being mentioned. This highlights the damage trend-jacking can do to your brand image without proper social media etiquette. Don’t join the dark side of social media!