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Online Trends

Published October 30th 2019

20 Best Marketing Campaigns of 2019, Ranked by Data

We used Brandwatch’s AI assistant Iris to search through nearly a billion brand-related posts, identifying the best marketing campaigns of 2019

We’re always told how hard it is for marketers to compete in a landscape that’s so full of noise.

We’re told that people are now distrustful of advertising, and that branded content is being shunned.

But that’s not always the case. In our recent report, 101 times brands went viral in 2019, we found that people were more than happy to get involved in marketing campaigns that connected with them, with brands racking up hundreds of thousands of shares.

The key is in the connection – as we’ll see here, the campaigns that have won the most conversation online in 2019 have been ones that involve big-name celebrities that people love (see entry 20 for an example), that get people excited about a big announcement (see entry 17), or that provide a lot of value in themselves (see entry 13).

So, which brands did this best in 2019? Here are the top 20, ranked by how much conversation each campaign drove on social media in a single day.

20. Shawn Mendes teams up with Calvin Klein on #MyCalvins campaign

Shawn Mendes’ partnership with Calvin Klein throughout 2019 managed to hit the full ‘101 times’ list twice.

On both occasions, it was tweets from his own account (not CK’s) that seemed to stimulate the most conversation.

19. Givenchy hints at the new face of its brand (it’s Ariana Grande)

A tweet featuring a mysterious silhouette of the new face of Givenchy generated a lot of conversation – mainly because it wasn’t so mysterious.

Ariana Grande’s signature pony tail was recognized by many, who shared the news far and wide.

18. Harry Styles’ partnership with Gucci

Harry Styles and his ongoing friendship with Gucci made the ‘101 times’ list for multiple reasons.

Styles is often photographed in Gucci attire (for example, at the Met Gala). He was also named as the face of the Gucci Tailoring campaign.

17. Adult Swim announces the launch date of the next season of Rick & Morty

It’s not hard to generate excitement when you’ve got a show as popular as Rick & Morty.

Back in May, Adult Swim released the following announcement that got fans hyped for the upcoming season.

16. Revelations at Apple’s WWDC, including upcoming Dark Mode

Making the top campaigns list again this year (WWDC ranked at number 13 in last year’s version of this blog post), Apple got people talking about its Worldwide Developers Conference.

Perhaps the biggest revelation of all was that iOS 13 would have a ‘Dark Mode’, which seemed to be a hit with iPhone fans.

15. Jennie from Blackpink repping Chanel

If you’re not yet aware of the influence of Kpop on modern culture, this list is going to teach you a thing or two.

Jennie is a member of Kpop group Blackpink, a group with a talent for going viral. Jennie made the ‘101 times’ list multiple times, boosting Chanel’s online presence.

14. The Nintendo Switch Lite is announced

The Nintendo Switch is a much-loved console – the brand recently revealed that it had sold a total of 36.87 million systems.

So, when Nintendo announced a ‘Lite’ version of the console this year, the crowd went wild.

13. Nike’s inspirational video proves popular on social media

Nike has a habit of making huge splashes online, and their February #JustDoIt promotional video did not disappoint.

Nike’s positive video content is impactful and often has a great shelf life – it’s no wonder that they’re able to generate so much conversation.

12. Taco Bell’s sponsorship of this Best Fan Army award pays off with a big mention from BTS

You may have heard of BTS, the Kpop group with the enormous following and a talent for activating vast swathes of fans across the world.

When Taco Bell decided to sponsor this Best Fan Army award, they made a good decision. The conversation that exploded around BTS, with fans fighting for them to win the award, got their brand name spread across the internet.

11. Kai from EXO’s partnership with Gucci

This year, Kai from K-pop band EXO became Gucci’s first Korean Global Ambassador.

His partnership with the brand made the ‘101 times’ list on multiple occasions, from his appearance at Gucci’s Cruise 2020 show to the announcement of his ambassadorship.

10. Popeyes Chicken gets sassy

Fast food chains are beginning to get a knack for generating online engagement, both through humor and through raw, uncensored sass.

Popeyes has been giving it a go this year, posting jabs at both Chick-fil-A and Wendy’s.

9. #SamsungEvent trends as the next Galaxy smartphone being revealed

Another consumer tech brand hits our list, generating excitement about a new product.

This time it’s Samsung, revealing the next Galaxy smartphone. The event caused around 287,731 social media mentions on the day.

8. Wendy’s do what they do best on Twitter – generating unreal levels of engagement

Popeyes Chicken may have had a pop at Wendy’s further up the list, but they’re yet to unseat Wendy’s as the fast-food queen of social media.

Watch them get 2 million likes with a single tweet.


7. Nintendo Direct continues to bring in huge audiences

Nintendo, if you hadn’t guessed, does incredibly well in our list of brands going viral. They’re huge, loyal audience means they’re always able to generate interest in what’s new.

Part of engaging with that audience is regular Nintendo Direct videos which give out information on what’s coming next in the Nintendo universe.

Multiple Nintendo Directs made it into our ‘101 times’ list.

6. BTS share an Amazon promotion in Time Square, igniting interest from fans

BTS will always make waves on social, so any brand that partners with them, or associates itself with them, is probably going to see big numbers.

This has been proven above with Taco Bell’s sponsorship of the Best Fan Army award, and it’s evident here with BTS tweeting this Amazon ad in Times Square to rapturous RT applause.

5. The MTV VMAs go big on social

People might not be watching so much TV anymore, but the draw of celebrity events is too much to resist on social.

We found 574,930 mentions of MTV on the day of the VMAs on social media – that’s a pretty solid turn out.

4. Nintendo’s E3 presence makes for a big social splash once again

Nintendo generated excellent engagement at E3 this year, bringing them in at number 4 on our list of top marketing campaigns of 2019.

Their ability to generate positive reactions around new products is hard to beat.

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