Hollard- The Good House

The ‘key‘ branded content elements:

Our content approach of The Good House worked as modular element in the Hollard communications ecosystem. Our soft sell solution was a engaging unbranded soap opera post series that becomes dynamic when the characters in the story ‘came to life’ within the Facebook ecosystem. This brought familiarity, intimacy and humor to an intimidating insurance company.

The Problem:

Insurance companies are seen as impersonal and uncaring. Asked to use Facebook to build brand love for Hollard Insurance, we decided to show that Hollard, uniquely, understands that people’s stuff is not just stuff. Our possessions are loved and personal.


The solution:

We used Facebook in a new way by creating a branded rolling narrative about a family and their stuff, told entirely through posts and comments from the point of view of ordinary household items.


How we did it:

1: We created a Facebook page for the house that our fictional family lived in. We set up 22 different business pages, which represented each of the family’s possessions. The possessions then shared photos and comments to The Good House Facebook page.

2: We used these shares and posts to build a story about the house, which unfolded over 2 months and 24 posts.

3: We drove traffic to each instalment with promoted posts in the form of stand-alone engaging cartoons that clicked through to The Good House Page, where one could follow the whole story.

4: Once the consumer clicked on the promoted post they could delve into all The Good House content and like the page to receive future episodes in real-time. 4: Shared the content on Hollard’s social platforms to increase engagement.


How the audience were drawn to the content:

Promoted posts drove traffic to each installment on The Good House Page. We took advantage of Facebook’s 20% text rule and created cartoons for each episode, which were entertaining in their own right and had a high engagement rate. In this way we lured people to the rest of the story to expand our following on The Good House Page.


What was the outcome?

Reach: 2 016 788 (mass middle class awareness)

Engagement rate: 2.06% engaged (almost double the category average)

Cost: 0.11c per engagement (USD).


Through shares, likes and comments by consumers, we appeared in the news feeds of ordinary South Africans and research tells us that friends and family are the most powerful advocates when choosing insurance.

A Key to Unlocking Generation Y

The importance of understanding the audience and their background:

Growing up in Soweto in the 90s meant an exposure to a variety of brands at an early age. I vividly remember the Festive Season, signalling the beginning of shopping sprees and long play days. For my siblings and cousins, it meant we were all getting new clothes for Christmas Day and if we were lucky enough, we would get new clothes for New Year’s too,  but that would most likely be school uniforms.

The Christmas of 1998 was probably my most memorable as I got my first pair of All Star sneakers and a pair of Delela (Overall) jeans. I have never been prouder being a part of the trending culture. Your clothing meant a lot; it defined who you were, it increased or decreased your social currency depending on the brand, and most importantly, it reflected your family status depending on the price. As a kid, it was important to fit in with your peers.

In high school, brands were an obsession, a status symbol, and a very expensive game to keep up with. Brands became trendy and if you were not trending, then you were non-existent.

I stood on the sidelines and watched my affluent peers living the life I wanted. Being a trendsetter came with opportunities, and for a boy in puberty those benefits also included dating affluent girls. A long story short, I never became a trendsetter in high school, but I learned a great deal about influences within my generation.

My story not unique. It is shared by the majority of generation Y; people born in the early 80s to early 90s who grew up around brands that played a significant role in our upbringing. My peers from childhood still judge their self-worth by the value of their material collections.


However, the game has now changed significantly as there is no particular brand that dictates an entire generational trend. People are looking for their own trend to cultivate their individual identity. The obsession is no longer about brands as a whole, but finding one’s voice and identity in the brand. For example, purchasing a sneaker is more than finding a cool, well-known and trending brand, but finding a unique kind of a sneaker. If it is an Air Jordan, your sneakers must separate you from the rest.


What marketers should do to unlock these insights:

This generation is unique, we grew up in a branded environment. We are quite comfortable with brands and marketing tactics which means that we pose a challenge for marketers and the industry as whole as we are difficult to engage with and tricky to retain.

Our understanding around the intellect of brands is unique as we identify with what we deem is relevant and important at a particular time in our lives. We are not loyal to any particular brand, in other words,  a lot depends  on our attitude and behavior towards a brand, so we are more than likely to switch back and forth between labels.

There is however, a silver lining that comes with this fickle generation, which is that we inherently need to identify with everything that we do.

For marketers, the Holy Grail would be finding that unique voice which will unlock this generation. This key voice is the influence of this market. It must communicate with the audience in ways that describe the experience of using the brand, meaning that the voice must therefore live the brand.

An example of a brand that has this done well is Patagonia, a North American Outdoor Clothing and Gear Company. Its key voice is the people within the organization, who are passionate about the environment and are willing to take action on various environmental issues. Patagonia film these experiences and share them online with their communities. By living the brand, they create a deeper and more meaningful identity for the brand. The value of the brand directly resonates with their community, who feel compelled to take action and show their support for the same environmental causes.


5 things to keep in mind:

  1. Make sure the value of your brand extends beyond monetary value.
  2. Find the Key Voice that will be the influence.
  3. Tell the story that resonates with the values of your audience, i.e. people living your brand values.
  4. To communicate with the audience, be available on more than one media platform
  5. Brand loyalty is created by the kind of positive experiences people have with your brand, so listen to them closely.


Boiler Plate:

Skhumbuzo is currently a Marketing Apprentice at Quirk, where he began as a Graduate Intern in September last year. He studied Politics at Whitman College in the United States and would be graduating in the spring. Skhumbuzo is an avid reader and inspiring writer as he is currently writing his thesis on the Congo: a critique of the Congo as the Heart of Darkness. He is a passionate sports fanatic and social commenter on trends, politics, and business.

Internet Trends, the email renaissance, podcasts, augmented reality awesomeness and more… #Worthwhile

Yoh! Things are COOKING here at Quirk. Let’s jump straight into the interesting-ness that’s been in my browser tabs of late….

Do connect with me on twitter at @thescott if you’d like to share your own awesome stuff.



Late last month (I know, that was like, 3 weeks ago already, old news for most) saw the release of what seems to be becoming the unofficial “State of the Internet Nation*” presentation – “KPBC / Mary Meeker’s Internet Trends 2015“. There were a number of stand out points, especially the rise of vertically oriented video formats driven by the likes of Snapchat. There’s no reason video should conform to the 16:9 landscape orientation that originated from TV. Things are moving on!

2015 Internet Trends Report from Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers

KPCB’s Mary Meeker presents the 2015 Internet Trends report, 20 years after the inaugural “The Internet Report” was first published in 1995. Since then, the number of Internet users has risen from 35 million in 1995 to more than 2.8 billion today. The 2015 report looks at key Internet trends globally – while still healthy Internet user and smartphone subscription growth continue to slow, Internet engagement continues to rise led by consumers spending more time on their mobile devices, where they can be connected 24/7. Mobile advertising still has headroom to expand and new innovations around ad formats and buy buttons should prove compelling for consumers and businesses.

* “State of the Interwebz” for short

From Only Dead Fish, Mr. Perkin has put together a smashing little piece  “On Great Email Newsletters

“I think the ongoing renaissance of email newsletters is quite fascinating. I subscribe to quite a number that I’d describe as not only original and different, but wonderfully useful and interesting. My own weekly email has been going for five years now and has built up nicely over that time. So I’ve got together with some of the authors of my favourite newsletters to talk about why they’ve become more popular of late, what makes a good one, our different approaches and why we do it.”


Kind of related but not, “A Podcast syllabus for Planners & Strategists” is a nice start for those looking a way into the (superbly awesomely great) world of podcasts. I listen almost exclusively to podcasts (and of course Deezer) in the car and can’t imagine going back to radio. As Mitch Joel said in passing in one of his own podcast shows – “podcasts are the email of audio” (or something like that). For iPhone users, I recommend Overcast as your podcast player. it’s most excellent.

My most looked-forward-to podcasts in no particular order:

I’ll pull the pin, throw this one in and run…

The debate about whether or not UX/UI designers should be able to code rages on…

Markup vs. Mockup

Yesterday on Twitter I became briefly embroiled in what I’m calling the ‘markup vs mockup’ debate, sparked by this article. In case you’ve been in UX Siberia (not a conference, though it should be) the dogma du jour is that ‘designers’ (by which we mean visual and interaction designers) should be able to ‘code’ (by which we mean implement – nay, initiate – their designs using HTML, CSS and perhaps a dash of jQuery).



From the department of “The future is already here — it’s just not very evenly distributed.* “, take a look at this demo for Microsoft’s new Hololens augmented reality goggles. It starts to get really interesting at about 2:30.

* quote by William Gibson

While Microsoft’s Hololens is trying to own the augmented reality side of things (laying information / experiences on top of real life), Oculus, who’s pretty much owning the virtual reality space (completely virtualised 3D worlds), is ready for your credit card. Their site is quite lovely.

And don’t forget Google’s lo-fi but just as awesome VR goggle kit “Cardboard“. Nice little DIY project for your weekend right there!

From the department of “B2B marketing done right”, a nice bit of content here from YASKAWA an industrial robot manufacturer and a very B2B type business.

I think the concept of “B2B” is going to start fading away a bit after we all realise that the person hiding behind the second B is just a regular human who might enjoy watching a robot slice stuff up with a samurai sword. (Or Epic Splits by Mr. Van Damme for that matter).

It made me curious enough to go take a look at their website (which wasn’t as exciting as the video.)

Attn designers: take a look at Google Design‘s section of the internet.

We’re Google Design, a cooperative effort led by a group of designers, developers, writers, and UX advocates at Google whose goal is to capture and share our work and ideas with you.

So you think you’re good at Keynote (or powerpoint?)

“I wanted to explore using Keynote’s animation tools to create a motion graphic piece. You can read more about my process and download the project at lindadong.com/blog/keynotemotiongraphic


And. I’m. Done.



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