Top 10 Social Media Wins of 2013

The next round of “likes” is on us…

We already shared the worst of social media in 2013, so here’s to the best…or at least our own approximation of it.

OBVIOUS DISCLAIMER IS OBVIOUS: Yes, this list is highly subjective and you’re going to see some repetition/glaring omissions. But such is the nature of year-end clickbait, no?

Here, then, are the stories that demonstrated what social media meant to us and our industry in 2013.

Honorable MentionDeadspin Tweets What Everyone Else in the World Would Love to Say to Donald Trump

We start with our most irreverent/irrelevant example not because we can really learn anything from it but simply due to the fact that social media runs on schadenfreude. Twitter has enabled us to give anyone and everyone the middle finger if we so desire, and if we happen to run a popular web property then there’s even a chance that thousands of people will notice us when we do it.

Bart Simpson never had it so good.

10. Chobani Finds the Fruit on the Bottom of a Product Quality Crisis

Facebook may alternately bore and annoy the cool kids, but it’s also a critical crisis communications tool. For proof, look at Chobani’s response to a fairly standard product quality problem. Once the company realized that the “contaminated yogurt” story would hit the press, Chobani knew that its team had only one option: explain themselves to as many people as possible in a transparent way. Sure, they could have issued a press release and a public statement, but few would have read or watched it; the CEO’s quotes would have landed near the bottom of every related story.

Instead, the brand reached out to the people who most deserved an apology—its existing fans—with a heartfelt message and a candid shot of the public face’s face. Can’t get much more personal than that.

9. Bertolli Jumps on Barilla’s PR Fail

It’s tough to decide how and when to make the most of a competitor’s stumbles. But this one fell into Bertolli‘s lap, giving the brand’s social team a quick, cheeky project that earned only positive press coverage.

At the same time, the fact that Bertolli didn’t make an even bigger deal about this promo tells us that change is a very gradual thing. What were they scared of, exactly?

8. DiGiorno Hollers from the Hills with a Not-Quite-Random Twitter Stunt

Switzerland is a long way from Italy and Italy is a long way from DiGiorno. But the frozen pizza people knew that millions would be watching NBC’s The Sound of Music and that at least half of them would use it as a platform for half-formed jokes on Twitter.

It’s kind of like the Super Bowl: Netflix and DVR have ensured that very few events will attract millions of eyes at once, but when they do the opportunity for attention-grabbing parody is ripe. Also: no one’s going to get angry at a brand for hijacking a lame corporate hashtag.

7. Oreo Shows Us All How to Vine

When Vine first appeared in January we thought “that’s kind of cool” but quickly realized that the most effective loops take time and planning. The “world’s first Vine press release” was an experiment we haven’t seen repeated, but a few brands demonstrated the potential of the medium and it’s no surprise that Oreo was one of them.

Yes, the Super Bowl blackout brought us the Tweet Heard ‘Round the World that will appear on pretty much every social media listicle roundup this year. But when it comes to creativity we were more impressed by this series paying homage to classic horror films.