Here at Punch, we love social media. We love to share ideas, articles, campaigns, ads (and maybe the odd cute puppy GIF) to engage with our online community.
While the internet is no stranger to negativity, brands are now looking to encourage some good old-fashioned kindness between users.
Photo-sharing application Instagram boasts an 800 million-strong global community – with a reported 500 million active daily users. From anonymous reporting to comment controls, Instagram is introducing a host of new measures to make its community a safer place. However, what caught our eye was its #KindComments campaign – a “global movement to spread messages of kindness, love and positivity on and off Instagram”. Users are encouraged to leave compliments and positive notes on people’s photos, but also celebrate all the kind things their followers have said to them.
Not content with restricting the campaign to the online platform, Instagram tasked artists from around the world to create kindness walls. Select city spaces became home to colourful murals, featuring everything from inspiring statements to geometric graphics and much in between. Creators and spectators were asked to take photos and share along with a kind comment – they could then further tag their post or Stories with a heart-shaped kindness sticker.
Showing this sense of compassion and humanity is nothing new to brands – The Drum dubbed ‘kindness’ a full-blown marketing trend back in 2015. We’re all familiar with the phrase ‘actions speak louder than words’, and random acts of kindness are a great way for brands to show customers they care.
It also seems to work for a cross section of brands and platforms; in celebration of World Kindess Day 2016, staff from Interflora took to the streets of London to hand out free yellow roses with the encouragement to pass them on while filming people’s responses.
Whilst newspaper Metro, in association with Asda, decided to build on one of its most popular print features – the ‘Good Deed Feed’. It provided a platform for people to share their acts of kindness through the hashtag #GoodDeed on Twitter, as it sought to find the UK’s ‘kindest’ region.
Staff from Glamour magazine tasked themselves with leaving more kind comments on Instagram. After leaving more than 100 appreciative notes, they were encouraged by the responses – which were full of joy and mutual appreciation – and spurred their readers to do the same.
It’s also worth noting Ad Week’s discovery that 80% of Instagram users have voluntarily connected with brands on the platform this year. Could there be value in highlighting your brand’s altruism across those little squares? Instagram has grown substantially, but it can also be quite an intimate space, with users actively wanting to connect and engage. What #KindComments could you bring to your users’ feeds?