Case Study: Social Media Giveaway

Executive overview –  The client gave away three 13×19 inches as part of a promotion for a print release. The organic post reached 6423 people (“Instagram photos and videos”, 2019). Combined with the 16 shares from supporters we estimate it reached an additional 5499 new people (Rabo, 2019). Shares are a valuable social action, according to INC 84% of people trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendations (Bloem, 2017).

Background –  The ever-growing world of social media enables us to capture the attention of millions of users to promote, sell, and raise awareness of a product. As of June 2018, there are over 1 billion active users on Instagram (“Instagram photos and videos”, 2019). The rise of technology has paved a way for individuals to create online communities based on shared values and ideals. The intersectionality between information technology and social media has made it easier for marketers to reach their consumers thus increasing their social capital and separating themselves amongst competitors. In addition, the rise of social media has enabled individuals to create a safe space by creating a niche around common interests. 

  The client of this project is an artist (@chambersfineart) based out of Denver, Colorado, who asked the company to create a marketing campaign to help raise awareness around his brand. Using the power of social media, this marketing campaign promotes artwork that attempts to encapsulate the issue of immigration. The model used to create the product is a painting of an illegal immigrant, who did not know he was illegal until he was 18 and is currently in court proceedings. By all definitions, the person in the painting is Culturally American, with American education and is fluent in English. The artist is the son of a Bolivian immigrant and a Texan, so this issue is personal to the artist on many levels. This is a sentiment shared by millions of immigrants, especially given the current political and social state. As of 2015, the United States has the largest immigrant population of any country at 47 million (“Immigration to the United States”, 2019). Immigration has been a major source of growth throughout much of U.S. history. With the exception of the small percentage of Native Americans, every United States Citizen can trace their ancestry to immigrants from other nations around the world (“Immigration to the United States”, 2019). We determined that the best approach would be to promote one of the artist’s own products within the social media platform Instagram, around a topic many can relate to. Many social media campaigns use un-affiliated promotional products that perform well such as iPods, gift cards or concert tickets, however, the result of giving away items unaffiliated with the client’s brand could produce mixed results as consumers might not have any interest in the campaign and are participating just to win the promotional product. With the goal of engaging users who share interest around the issue of immigration, we believe that giving away the artist’s own work will create a personal connection, thus enhancing the brand’s social capital. 

Our target audience includes Instagram users who are above the age of 25, in the top 50% income bracket. Ideally, these individuals would have an interest in art and/or express interest in the clients’ product. We began by researching similar campaigns to note where others have failed or succeeded. Notable artists with large following such as Mark Maggiori  (@markmaggiori) and David Cheiftez (@davidcheifetz) have successfully conducted similar marketing campaigns in the past, resulting in 104,000 and 113,000 followers relatively (“Instagram photos and videos”, 2019). These artists have been able to utilize Instagram by sharing specific products, thus creating a community within the platform where users can comment or share ideas around the artist’s post. We concluded that following a similar approach with social action and propagation action would be the most suitable to grow the presence of our client. 

Methodology – We presented the idea to our client who was enthusiastic about giving away his product in an effort to grow his social media presence. He was agreeable to giving away “artist proofs”, which would be a unique and personal experience to the winners. An “artist proof” is a rough, in-print version of the final product created by the artist to determine the color composition and make sure the prints are free of errors. Artist proofs generally have small errors and are commonly thrown away by artists. In this scenario, we gave away three artist proofs that were relatively close to the final print run in terms of product quality. The artist was comfortable with making three 13 inch x 19 inch archival prints to be used in the giveaway. 

The group created a simple and effective post as seen in figure 1, where we encouraged the audience to like the post and “share” in order to be eligible to win the product. With the artist’s permission, we analyzed his profile using the “Insight” feature on Instagram and determined that his posts had the best “engagement” on Wednesdays between 10 am till 12 pm (“Instagram photos and videos”, 2019). The group drafted the post and shared it with the artist for consent. Upon approval, we waited for the ideal time of Wednesday at 10 am to share the post on social media. The team decided to keep a record of the number of “likes”, “hashtag shares” and ‘post shares”  in addition to keeping track of the “insight” feature on Instagram. 

Ethical Concerns – As the product did not include any nudity or violence, we anticipated that the project would not be flagged as “inappropriate”, meeting the requirements of the platform (“Instagram Help Center”, 2019). However, as immigration is one of the most highly debated topics, we assigned a team member to actively engaged with the client’s followers, answering questions and thanking people for sharing. As the post was made from the client’s page, we decided to maintain the client’s political beliefs and values in case of uncertainty. 

Results and Analysis – After running the promotion for one week,  measuring statistics on November 6, 2019, the results were as follows: 251 likes, 5 hashtag shares, 8 post saves, 8 post shares, and 3 story shares. Ultimately, we reached 6,423 individual Instagram accounts creating a total of 7,829 impressions. 69 of the impressions came from accounts that did not have any previous connection to the artist’s page. The total number of impressions for this post was also 20% higher than the artist’s previous posts which generally receive on average 5138 reach (“Instagram photos and videos”, 2019). Considering that the cost of the promotion was only the cost of the product, the results were phenomenal. We received 8 post saves, 8 post shares, 251 likes, 5 hashtag shares, and 3 story shares. We estimate that the total reach of the shares, hashtag and story shares was 5499 impressions, based on iconosquare the average Instagram post in 2018 reached 34.37% of their audience (Rabo, 2019), the average follower count is less than 1000 according to (2019). Using these metrics, we can calculate the reach of the shares: 16 shares x 1000 followers/share x 34.37% = 5499 estimated reach.

Conclusion: These findings suggest that we were able to reach a large audience relatively easily and that sharing is a valuable tool for reaching new customers. Even though we only received 16 share actions, relatively speaking those social actions were quite valuable and we estimate that those actions nearly doubled the total amount of people we would have reached organically. Team members were not sure if the contest was long enough or if it would have performed better if it were shorter. Generally speaking, the more actions you ask someone to take the less likely it will be that those actions are taken. In our opinion, Instagram is not the best platform for sharing. Thus we speculate that a similar social campaign on a platform that is better for sharing, such as Twitter or Facebook, may have resulted in more social actions. Additionally, we wonder if the social justice aspect of the artists’ work helped or hurt the effectiveness of the campaign. If it did help, could we have designed the campaign to make the social justice aspect more apparent and or donate money to a cause related to the social justice aspect?


Bloem, C. (2017, July 31). 84 Percent of People Trust Online Reviews As Much As Friends. Here’s How to Manage What They See. Retrieved November 9, 2019, from

Immigration to the United States. (2019, November 8). Retrieved November 10, 2019, from

Instagram Help Center. (2019). Retrieved 2019, from

Instagram photos and videos. (2019, November 11). Retrieved November 11, 2019, from

Instagram: active users 2018. (2019). Retrieved from

Mention. (2019). Thank you for downloading Mention’s Instagram Engagement Report 2018. Retrieved November 10, 2019, from

Rabo, O. (2019, June 5). The Average Instagram Engagement Rate is 4.7%. But Can You Do Better? Retrieved from

August - October 31 2015 Average CPC is $.05

Case Study: SEM Google Adwords Quality Score

According to Google:

Because we believe that better ads are a good thing for everyone, the Google Ads system is set up to identify and reward quality ads. High-quality ads can give you a higher Ad Rank and lead to other potential benefits, including:

  • Lower costs-per-click

  • Better ad positions

  • Eligibility for ad extensions and other ad formats

The purpose of this study is to demonstrate how a Google Quality Score can affect Cost Per Click. Other factors on the effectiveness of SEM optimization were excluded. That being said, one of the landing pages collected 200 email addresses per day. All materials included in this study use the same demographics, the same keywords, and the same landing pages. This case study is a real-life example of when I managed to reduce the Cost Per Click just by increasing a landing pages’ Quality Score. Below is a comparison between two Adwords budgets of almost the same size on the same website. The average cost per click from February to May is $.94 while the average cost per click from August to October is $.05. In this scenario, I was able to increase web traffic by over 20x while using the same budget and keywords. The changes that were made increased our Quality Score from 2/10 to 8/10.

The Google Quality Score for any landing page is based on three factors. Those factors are: Expected clickthrough rate, Ad relevance, and Landing page experience. Using the keyword planner, I determined a series of on-brand keywords that would result in massive amounts of traffic. Using those keywords, I designed two contests and wrote the copy for each landing page while keeping SEM in mind. These contests are where the vast majority of the web traffic went to. The goals of the contests were to collect email addresses and to gain organic exposure. In order to meet the requirements from Google to increase our Quality Score, I directed the web team to make changes to the website.

Landing page experience is probably the most important part of any website. Landing pages should be designed with user-friendliness in mind. Pagespeed is an important factor in determining the Landing page experience. We made our landing pages faster by removing scripts and unnecessary elements that affect how fast the page speed loads – while still remaining well designed. We had to ask ourselves what we absolutely needed on the website. Realizing that this was an unreasonable ask of the entire website, we ended up only making dramatic changes to the pages that were being served in Google Ads. Some of the suggestions on what needed to be changed can be found through the Google PageSpeed Tool. Also, there is no harm in increasing your page speed, Amazon discovered that for every 100ms above 2 seconds that their page takes to load, it costs their company %1 in revenue. So 1 second = -10% in revenue.

View The Archived landing page here

View the usable web archive version here

Having a high Expected Click Through Ratio can be tricky. Click Through Ratio is the ratio between the number of times an ad is shown versus the number of times an ad is clicked. A higher Click Through Ratio would suggest that your ad is resonating with the audience it’s being advertised to, that the Ad being served is relevant. For this scenario, I created hundreds of variants of copy for the Ads within the campaign. Using A/B testing, the most effective ads gradually rose to the top and I paused the ineffective ones. The difference in Click Through Ratio varied from 3% to 15%.

The next factor in defining quality score is Ad Relevance. Ad Relevance is essentially the relationship between the keywords within an AdGroup, the relationship between the keywords and the landing page, and the relationship between the keywords and the ads that you’re displaying. To increase Ad Relevance, I had to clean up the AdGroups to make sure that the keywords within the AdGroup were related to each other. I then wrote SEM optimized copy with our keywords in mind, which was edited by executive staff. Then I directed the web team to include keywords in the landing pages Meta-data, Alt-Text, and URL. This required some backend changes. Also, every graphic on the website was renamed with SEM optimization in mind.



Case Study: PeaceJam’s “Hero Award”

In 2015, I strategized the BillionActs Hero Award with the intent to generate new user leads, generate web traffic, and increase brand awareness. The central idea included an award presented by a Nobel Peace Laureate during PeaceJam’s yearly film premiere at the Monte Carlo Television and Film Festival. Nominees in 5 categories win an award based on a half jury, half public vote. By 2017, this multi-department social media contest received 10,036 new registered users, 30,903 votes, and 94,222 organic page views.

Public nominations were accepted until March of 2017, users were encouraged to nominate their favorite Act of Peace through the BillionActs website. At the end of the year, we selected 10 of the best Acts of Peace logged on the BillionActs website, and these top ten acts of peace became the semi-finalists for the Hero Award. The semi-finalists competed in 5 different on-brand categories; Best Youth Act, Best Non-Profit Act, Best Business Act, Best University Act, and Best Up and Coming Peacemaker. Team mebers worked together to create a video for each semi-finalist that briefly explained what each semi-finalist accomplished that qualified them for the nomination. For quality control reasons, we made all the videos in-house. This ensured that we portrayed our brand to the public in a consistent manner and that no person would have an advantage or disadvantage based on the quality of their video production. I wrote draft copy for each of the video script, which followed a simple formula: demonstrate the problem with legitimate statistics, then position the semi-finalist as the solution.

Additionally, I communicated the strategy and the structure of the contest to PeaceJam’s internal web team. Such as; How the landing page should look? What order the videos should go in? Why did we decide not to display vote counts above 1000? Which each had their own strategic answer.

Semi-finalists were allowed 4 weeks between April and May to encourage their followers to help measure their impact by voting. This short voting period added urgeny to the campaign. During this time period, I drafted language for the nominees to share on their social media outlets and coordinated with each of the semi-finalists’ marketing teams to highlight each nominee on a particular day across our internal 1.1 M follower social media network. This allowed us to maximize our organic exposure for each nominee. Voting required users to register through the BillionActs of Peace website. This resulted in new user registrations. In order to prevent the contest from becoming a popularity contest, the winners were partially determined by popular vote and partially determined by a jury made up of Nobel Peace Laureates serving on PeaceJam’s board. Winners were announced just after the PeaceJam Foundation’s board meeting that June.