“Paul W. Swansen tagged a photo of you.”
Every day, millions of people all over the world see a message like this on Facebook.
And they usually feel some sort of emotion before clicking on that photo. They might be filled with embarrassment (“please tell me this was not from last night!”) or they might be bursting with excitement (“yes, they finally put that picture up!”), but normally, they’re not confused.
But I bet your would be if you were tagged in a photo at an event you never attended.
Your face is right there in the picture, at a random location you’ve never seen before. And you’re surrounded by people you’ve never met. But you have no recollection of ever being there.
What’s going on?!?!?!
The organization photoshopped images of people into photographs from “fake” events and had help from other organizations who created photo albums and hosted these fake images on their Facebook page. Then, they tagged the individual people in the photos to stir up the pot and create a confusing, eye-opening experience.
There was a specific call to action: spread awareness by letting your friends experience this too.
Those tagged in photos were encouraged to go to the event website and upload their friend’s pictures so they too could be placed in these images and experience the confusion those with Alzheimer’s deal with everyday.
The organization was smart by first tagging Dutch celebrities and social influencers, who really kick started this campaign and helped the cause receive the attention it deserves.
Here’s a video summing up the Facebook campaign:
I’m just fascinated because most organizations like this tend to play the guilt card in their marketing efforts by making individuals feel bad for not helping out (think Sarah McLachlan’s ASPCA commercials). They show people in need, play sad music and try to tug on the heartstrings on the consumers.
Alzheimer Nederland could have done something like this , but instead instead of showing people in need, they’re making the audience feel the need these people have. It makes them have a stronger connection to the brand, and creates of community of people who can share this experience with others.
The Facebook campaign is also a reminder to aspiring marketers- you don’t need to be working on Coke or Tide or other major name brands to produce creative, inspiring work.
This campaign is a prime example of that. It has inspired participation, lead to the creation of shareable content, and has given people the power to share an experience (not just a picture or a message or a greeting) with someone else digitally.