2016 in Review:The 10 Best Twitter Hashtag Campaigns

2016 has been a remarkable year for social media marketing. Without a doubt, the year ushered in some of the most amazing trends that are going to stay with us for a long time.

From sports to media, the year has certainly been a roller coaster ride. With more than 300 million active users on Twitter, the social media platform hosts plenty of viral campaigns every year, and 2016 has not been an exception. We’ve handpicked some of the most diverse hashtag campaigns of 2016 that have left a unique mark. We’ve selected these campaigns on the basis of originality and the impact they had on the brand’s online presence. Relive these amazing marketing tactics of 2016!

10. #EarthHourUK by WWF

Earlier this year, World Wildlife Fund launched an ambitious social media campaign for Earth Hour. Unlike most other campaigns, it urged people to step out of their homes and get away from technology for at least one hour.

Furthermore, it encouraged people to talk about the rapidly changing environment and the depletion of our natural resources. The campaign featured various thoughtful visual aids that gave it an enormous boost.

9. #GayTurtle by Amnesty International

This was an amazing campaign to create awareness regarding burning LGBT issues. #GayTurtle created a lot of buzz on Twitter due to its anti-homophobic lesson. Amnesty International created a campaign around a video, which featured various customers while buying a turtle. In the video, a lot of customers were initially drawn towards a turtle. However, their feelings often changed when they were informed that the turtle was gay.

The campaign had a thoughtful lesson about the surge of homophobia with a perfect content marketing delivery. In no time, the #GayTurtle campaign started trending on Twitter and gave amazing exposure to Amnesty International.

8. #IHateJeffsy by YT Industries

#IHateJeffsy was a fun and creative campaign that was organised by YT Industries. The German brand is known to produce some of the finest mountain bikes and created this amazing campaign for the launch of their new product, JEFFSY.

The campaign had various ads (and a video) that featured women talking about how they hate JEFFSY, without letting the audience know anything else about “JEFFSY”. It was certainly a creative way to launch a new product and made people curious about it.

7. #BlackLivesMatter

What makes #BlackLivesMatter so special is that it isn’t just a campaign, but a movement in itself. The hashtag gained a lot of traction throughout the year and inspired various campaigns. The movement later led to a dedicated non-profit organisation with the tagline “Freedom & justice for all black lives.”

6. #GreatStarts by Kellogg’s

Who doesn’t love breakfast, right? Earlier this year, Kellogg’s came up with this creative campaign that inspired everyone to start their day with a bang. It encouraged people to share details about their morning ritual on Twitter.

One of the best things about the campaign is that it involved famous athletes like Louis Smith, Sir Steve Redgrave, and Rebecca Adlington. The campaign also had a 100-day countdown that further added to the hype. Each day, a scene from a famous movie was recreated with an iconic figure. With giveaways like tickets to Brazil, the campaign certainly got everyone talking on Twitter.

5. #WorthSaying by L’Oréal Paris

Almost every year L’Oréal Paris comes up with a signature marketing campaign. This year was certainly no exception as their #WorthSaying campaign was focused on female empowerment. It encouraged women from all over the world to speak their mind and let others know what’s important to them.

Needless to say, the campaign went really well with the brand’s iconic tagline “Because you’re worth it”. The brand also collaborated with plenty of celebrities to boost the campaign’s reach, and it certainly worked. The team did a remarkable job while highlighting the key issues of female empowerment.

4. #MarchMadness by Reese’s

For the fourth time, Reese’s partnered with the NCAA and became the official sponsor for #MarchMadness this year. Reese’s was able to tap just the right kind of audience with their campaign and illustrated the power of content marketing. It was teamed with amazing visual aids that boosted the overall reach of the campaign.

3. #MakeWhatsNext by Microsoft

It is one of the most successful hashtag campaigns that Microsoft has ever come up with. To let everyone know about the irrevocable contribution of women to our society, the brand organised this innovative campaign on Women’s International Day.

The campaign featured a video in which young girls were asked about famous scientists. After not being able to name many female scientists and inventors, the girls were encouraged to go ahead and make their dreams of becoming an inventor come true. The campaign also has a dedicated website, where one can read inspiring stories and gain more information about this campaign.

2. #ShareYourEars by Disney

Disney came up with their #ShareYourEars campaign for the Make A Wish Foundation in the beginning of 2016. The campaign invited everyone to share their pictures with Mickey Mouse Ears. It was the noble cause behind the campaign that gained so much traction all over social media.

Disney decided to donate $5 to Make A Wish foundation for every posting. Overall, the campaign was able to raise a fund of more than $1 million. Since there were no strict rules regarding the campaign, everyone had a great time posting their pictures with those signature Mickey Mouse Ears. The campaign went so viral that Disney ended up doubling its donation to Make A Wish to $2 million.

1. #Rio2016

Though not a traditional marketing campaign, #Rio2016 dominated Twitter this year. Not only was it the official hashtag for the Olympics, it was also used by plenty of other brands to increase their reach.

Since the hashtag was majorly used by athletes, fans, and almost everyone who was associated with the Olympics, it gained major traction from various brands as well. Samsung came up with their #DoWhatYouCan campaign that captured the essence of the mega-athletic event.

Plenty of other brands also tapped into this event. Gatorade ran their #LoveOfSport campaign with an animated movie about Usain Bolt. Nike also ran a #JustDoIt campaign featuring prominent athletes like Serena Williams and Mo Farah. Even Pizza Express won over Twitter with their #AndTheWinnerIsPizza campaign.

Those were indeed some of the most remarkable campaigns of this year. If we have missed something, let us know in the comments below and share your favourite hashtag campaign of 2016 with us!

About the author: A social media marketing enthusiast, Pankaj is determined to shape his ideas into perfect products. CoFounder of Socialert – Hashtag Analytics Tool, he believes in coming up with engaging tools to redefine the face of digital marketing. Learn more about him on his blog.