By Savannah McClelland
While most companies can agree with the wisdom of running an SEO campaign on keywords that pertain to brand or company, Snickers recently went for a strategy that was risky—but which apparently rewarded the offbeat company well. Snickers’ recent SEO campaign targeted users who misspelled words in Google searches.
The idea was born when Snickers realized that office-bound workers would likely not be able to reach the viral and social content they were also marketing with; most offices tend to block those types of sites in the name of productivity. The strategy became then to target those users through Google instead; the company bought approximately 25,000 misspelled search terms. The company worked with Google to sort through the most common misspellings of the most commonly searched words. When one of the misspellings was searched for, a paid ad would direct the user to youcantspellwhenyourehungry.com. The site features a Snickers bar with various misspellings of the company’s name flashing every few seconds, along with a branded message. It also invites page visitors to access the brand’s Facebook page “If your not shaking to mutch.”
According to Snickers and their UK agency AMV BBDO, they have reached somewhere in the neighborhood of 500,000 people in their target demographic with the clever search tactic. The campaign also makes sense in the larger context of the brand’s ongoing “You’re not you when you’re hungry” advertising message. The brilliant aspect of the strategy is that it goes about targeting not just people searching for the brand itself, but also a particular subset of people who might be interested in the brand without thinking of it. Overall, the campaign seems to be a successful one for the candy company, and is further evidence that particularly when it comes to marketing through the Web, ideas that can sound silly or risky can pay off in a big way for those brands that are willing to take the chance.