A co-worker of mine (with whom I’m friends on Facebook) lamented last night that she’s struggling for a gift for her five-year-old son. Specifically, he wants Santa to make something in his workshop. As a parent, that can be a tall order!
Another co-worker of mine (also a Facebook friend) saw our mutual friend’s post and said, “I’ve got an idea.”
I work in marketing at PTC, a company that creates, among other things, 3-D design software. So, what did my second co-worker do? She wrote up a short, light-hearted blog post for our PTC-run customer community, PlanetPTC.
In the story, she even comments that she saw the Facebook post from our first friend, and it inspired her to write a blog post, appealing to the super-creative community members of our 3-D design software (“Creo”). She appealed to them and essentially said, “What would Santa design if he used Creo for a day?” She even created a photo album where users can submit their ideas/designs for others to see.
In the past when we’ve solicited our customers for some cool/fun feedback (like our “show us a scary jack o’lantern designed in Creo” contest), people sent us in all kinds of designs. It was a lot of fun! People got to show off their design chops while getting into the holiday spirit.
Note that the blog post is now live. That is, within 12 hours of the Facebook post going up from one co-worker, another co-worker saw this as a light-hearted content marketing opportunity and drafted a post about it (with permission to do so!).
Is it working? I think so. In less than two hours of being posted, it’s been viewed more than 200 times. Also, according to some link statistics we have, it’s getting broadly re-tweeted and shared—indicating that we have an interested (or at least click-y!) readership. No designs have been submitted yet, but creating a nice, rendered 3-D image of a toy takes more than a few minutes with PTC’s Creo, so I expect to see some submissions later.
To me, this is an example of clever, relatively easy, light-hearted, real-time content marketing. Who doesn’t want to make a 5-year-old smile on Christmas Day?
What about you? Do you have any examples of content ideas right under your nose?