Dec 16, 2021

5 Successful Social Media Campaigns You Can Learn From

by Digital Marketing Institute

Nearly every successful business uses social media platforms for its marketing campaigns. Marketers now recognize the power of networks such as Facebook, YouTube and TikTok to attract, engage and convert customers.

The bad news? Review Trackers reports that 94 percent of customers say a bad review on social media has convinced them to avoid a business. While Pew Research found that 65% of people said social media was having a negative impact on society, only 10% believed it had a positive impact.

As a business owner, it's clear that using social media to your advantage is critical, but do you know how to maximize the impact of your social media marketing campaigns? Do you know what your goals should be and how to achieve them?

We’ve done some research to showcase five successful campaigns that made waves across social media platforms. So whether your business is new to social media marketing, or a seasoned veteran, these campaigns can give you insight into running campaigns that consumers respond to.

Facebook Social Media Campaign: Carlsberg

5 Successful Social Media Campaigns You Can Learn From

To support Liverpool FC in the final of the 2019 Champions League season, Carlsberg created a special red beer to match their football kit. To promote the beer and campaign Carlsberg used the power of global fan Facebook networks and celebrated its sponsorship and commitment to Liverpool FC. As part of the campaign, the brand shared a video message from Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp, to influencers and Liverpool fans.

Between May and July 2019, the campaign achieved:

  • 19 times return on ad spend
  • 7.2-point lift in association between Liverpool FC and Carlsberg
  • A 9-time increase in Carlsberg website traffic

Key takeaway

Facebook networks can be a very powerful way to engage a captive audience. By sponsoring Liverpool, Carlsberg improved its brand awareness and drove significant traffic to its website. This type of collaboration can be very effective in keeping a brand front of mind long after the campaign ends.

Other successful Facebook campaigns

Instagram Social Media Campaign: Red Bull

5 Successful Social Media Campaigns You Can Learn From

Consumers have been “given wings” for over 28 years by Red Bull, and they ranked #69 on the Forbes World’s Most Powerful Brand List in 2020. Their energy drink can be found in over 170 countries, so it comes as no surprise that the company has sold over 60 billion cans of their famous drink. Since its humble beginnings back in 1987, the brand has released four new flavors of energy drinks to cater to individual tastes and preferences.


To drive awareness of the extension of the brand. The goal of their Instagram campaign was based on boosting awareness and sales of their tropical flavored ‘Summer Edition’ energy drink for the Australian market.


With a firm focus on simplicity and brand building, Red Bull paved the way for their campaign with a promotional teaser just before summer hit. To get audiences focused on the can’s new look, they incorporated yellow filters across a range of images and videos portraying typical summer days. The brand was twice as likely to be associated with the #thissummer Instagram hashtag trend as any of its nearest competitors.


  • 10-point lift in top-of-mind awareness
  • 9-point lift in favorability
  • 7-point drop in the unconvinced market
  • 1.2 million consumers reached

Key Takeaway

There’s a big market for campaigns launched on social media, and the power Instagram has in driving engaged users is significant. In order to leverage Instagram to grow your customer base, you need to understand customer journeys within and across social networks so you can use them too.

Other successful Instagram campaigns

Twitter Social Media Campaign: Auto Trader

5 Successful Social Media Campaigns You Can Learn From

Auto Trader is the UK and Ireland’s largest online car marketplace.


Auto Trader wanted to use the branded hashtag #AutoTraderGoals in their 2018 World Cup campaign to raise awareness.


The brand wasn’t a sponsor but set itself a target of beating the official sponsors of the World Cup by trending above them. The sports marketing campaign offered a free car every time England scored a goal. Based on England’s prior World Cup performance the expectation in the general public was that they wouldn’t give away many cars!

The #AutoTraderGoals campaign used a structured approach to a Twitter campaign. The humor and excitement built as England performed better than expected.

5 Successful Social Media Campaigns You Can Learn From


This was a great example of branded campaign hashtag and Twitter marketing for the following reasons:

  • Twitter provides a ready audience of sports fans and its demographic is more male than female.
  • England did better than expected so the fact that Auto Trader gave away a car for every goal became a humorous narrative. The company pretended that the Finance Director was having a breakdown and supporting other teams so that he didn’t have to give away so many cars.
  • The hashtag explained the campaign and gave memorability to the brand when it trended above the World Cup sponsors (such as Coca-Cola) on Twitter. The brand was front of mind due to the presence of the hashtag during every England match.
  • The company used the combination of a sports audience and real-time focus to gain traction on Twitter.
  • Other brands got on the bandwagon and did parody tweets, which spread the story and hashtag further.

Key Takeaway

This campaign was successful because

  • It captured attention by using videos.
  • It encouraged conversations.
  • It used Twitter Conversational Cards to increase reach.
  • It captured people’s imagination. The interaction between the Financial Director and the public drove significant traffic and revenues on the Auto Trader site.

If you need some guidance, check out ‘How to Use Twitter for Business’ to get started. 

Other successful Twitter campaigns

LinkedIn Social Media Campaigns: Maersk

5 Successful Social Media Campaigns You Can Learn From

Maersk is the world’s largest container shipping company, with routes stretching across 150 countries. It has used a variety of social media channels for a range of marketing activities.


After conducting a social media survey, Maersk discovered that its customers prefer to connect with them on LinkedIn more than any other network. Armed with this knowledge, the company was able to use content marketing to share information relevant to its customers and prospects.

It uses LinkedIn as part of its B2C creative approach to provide shipping industry news to its followers. It also highlights industry trends and issues and encourages followers to engage in conversations.


By developing engaging content, Maersk has developed a strong thought leadership profile on LinkedIn, enhancing its reputation. For example, it has used engaging video content to discuss and promote key business issues. It aims to use LinkedIn to communicate and collaborate, and not just to sell.

Maersk uses the different LinkedIn pages to full effect. It completes all the elements of the pages to ensure it can comprehensively communicate its brand. And it links communications across all pages so its message is consistent.

Different employees are associated with different topics, such as ‘Together All the Way’, ‘Maersk Life’, and ‘Maersk Technology’. In this way,  trending posts can be collated together to create a stream of information. Using hashtags on its Career pages helps it to bring its messages together. In addition, it uses affiliate pages to showcase its different divisions and link them together.

Key Takeaway

Maersk was able to use a variety of content formats to leverage the power of LinkedIn to establish thought leadership and increase reach by providing value to its followers.

Other successful LinkedIn campaigns

YouTube Social Media Campaign: Jamie Oliver’s Food Tube

Jamie Oliver’s YouTube channel, Food Tube, provides recipes, tutorials, and funny videos, as well as guest appearances. The channel invites contributions and suggestions from its subscribers so they can become part of its story.


The channel aims to build a vibrant, interactive community of foodie followers.


Food Tube uses striking branding, a channel trailer, and well-organized playlists including ‘Cooking with Kids’ and ‘Staying Healthy’.  

Each video contains a clear title, a keyword-rich description, and a bespoke thumbnail image to draw the viewer in. The channel works well at keeping users engaged and scrolling between videos.


Chef Jamie Oliver’s Food Tube is one of the most successful food YouTube channels with more than 5.5 million subscribers.

Key Takeaway

Food Tube doesn’t just push a product to drive conversions and sales. It aims to build a community of food-loving advocates by providing engaging and entertaining content while inviting followers to collaborate. Plus if you use SEO effectively on YouTube, you can move your videos up the rankings to ensure the content is seen.

5 Successful Social Media Campaigns You Can Learn From

Other successful YouTube campaigns

There are five successful social media campaigns across different platforms that made waves in the last few years. These examples demonstrate just how valuable social media marketing can be and what a big difference it can make in lead generation, brand awareness, and sales. Keep these takeaways in mind when planning your next campaign!

Elevate Your Social Media Skills & Knowledge

DMI’s Social Media Marketing course will teach you how to plan, build, and implement social media campaigns that engage and convert. From Facebook to YouTube to LinkedIn to TikTok, you will understand the content formats that work on each platform along with how to use social for customer service and social commerce.


(First published 2016, updated 2022)

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