Ohio University Strategic Social Media

Crowdsourced Learning Lab #ouj4530

Category: Mackenzie Holden

Great Westerville Food Truck Festival- Campaign Proposal Write-Up

The Great Westerville Food Truck Festival provides a friendly family environment that is much more than just a food truck festival- it is a philanthropic event whose main purpose serves to benefit those in the Westerville area in need.

Our client has made a dedicated Facebook page for the event, but has strayed far from the page’s original purpose. We believe the solution to this weakness is to recenter the focus on the actual event itself, as well as its philanthropic benefits for the surrounding community. We believe creating a Twitter and Instagram account dedicated to the event will greatly benefit our client as these platforms will increase awareness and thusly attract new eyes to the event.

Team WFTF from left — Mackenzie Holden, Abbey Saddler, Jonathan Camargo

Team WFTF from left — Mackenzie Holden, Abbey Saddler, Jonathan Camargo

Our over-all goal for this campaign is to increase awareness of the Great Westerville Food Truck Festival. Our strategy revolves around highlighting the philanthropic benefits of the event, all the while generating ‘hype’ centered around the event itself through countdowns and other promotional content. To keep engagement steady year-round, our team suggests the maintenance of these social media channels on the event itself, rather than straying away from the festival, which is what the Great Westerville Food Truck Festival’s current social media presence has done.

By expanding onto other social media platforms, our team plans to grow the Great Westerville Food Truck Festival into a thriving staple of the Westerville community, both physically and virtually. To measure our success with this campaign, we plan to evaluate the campaign at three specific points in time- the beginning, or launch of the campaign, a month into the campaign, and a few weeks after the end of the actual festival. With our analysis of the festival, as well as strategically planned tactics, we believe this will help the festival accomplish its goal of increasing awareness, and thusly attendance, of the event.

Starbucks brewed up a hot #SocialFail with the #RaceTogether campaign

Mackenzie Holden


Photo of a #RaceTogether cup, launched by Starbucks CEO, Howard Schultz. Retrived from: http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/244035


Response tweet to the controversial #RaceTogether campaign. Retrieved from: http://www.theinclusionsolution.me/the-buzz-still-not-ready-to-race-together/

Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz has always been an advocate for sensitive issues going on around the world and here in the U.S. of A.  Recently, he made 97 Seattle shop locations LGBT “safe” zones in an effort to support gay rights and the strides that the U.S. has made this year.  Schultz has never been one to keep quiet on an issue and thinks that using his platform to make a difference is his duty.  Although that is all true, according to many Americans, he made one big mistake with this #socialfail by launching the #RaceTogether campaign in response to the August 2015 shooting of an unarmed black teen in Ferguson, Missouri, followed by several others like it New York, Madison, Wisconsin, and other cities.  Schultz backed the movement stating, “If we just keep going about out business and ringing the Starbucks register every day and ignoring this, then I think we are, in a sense, part of the problem.”  Starbucks released a video promoting the #RaceTogether campaign on its website to get things started.

Although his heart was in the right place, Howard Schultz was met with a high volume of skeptics on the idea because of the nature of the company and the racially charged sensitive topic.  Many saw it as Starbucks overstepping its boundaries into a territory it didn’t belong and joining a conversation that wasn’t appropriate for a white billionaire coffee shop chain owner to enter.

Despite his marketing team advising him to not take this sensitive social issue on, Schultz went on to encourage, but not require employees to write #RaceTogether on the Starbucks cups in order to strike a conversation about the racial inequality in this country and to remind customers that we are all in this together.  He made the statement “We knew this wouldn’t be easy, but we feel it is well worth the discomfort.”

The company received a lot of heat because of the way it was spread on social media, portraying mostly white employees “starting the conversation”.  It was seen as offensive and a bigger example of white privilege over anything, as seen below on the Starbucks Partners Instagram page.

Photo retrieved from: http://www.crowdbabble.com/blog/crisis-management-101-did-the-good-intentions-behind-starbucks-racetogether-pay-off/

Many thought that Schultz saw the tragedy as an opportunity to promote his brand, not considering how the public may feel in such a time on controversy.  He insisted that the campaign was not part of increasing the company’s bottom line, but a way to show his support for racial equality in a time of adversity.  On partner stated, “The current state of racism in our country is almost like humidity at times.  You can’t see it, but you feel it.”  Schultz also said that staying silent is not who Starbucks is.

Back lash continued to pour in from people all around the world, including celebrities, more notably, news comedians.  Specifically, John Oliver had a lot to say about the subject.  He pointed out that there was a place and time to talk about race and that it wasn’t in a coffee shop run by a white billionaire.  He also criticized the company for the way it reacted to the criticism.  Starbucks VP of Communications, Corey duBrowa, temporarily deleted his Twitter after he felt “personally attacked” by the slew of negative tweets targeted at him during the campaign.

Starbucks ultimately ceased the #RaceTogether cup writing phase on March 22nd stating that it “was always just the catalyst for a much broader and longer term conversation”.  Schultz thanked the employees for committing to such a difficult conversation.

The bottom line is although the intentions were right, the platform was all wrong and the execution was flawed.  Better luck next time, Howard.


Baertlein, L. (2015, March 18). Starbucks ‘Race Together’ Campaign Brews Backlash. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/03/18/starbucks-race-backlash_n_6898324.html

Carr, A. (2015, June 15). The Inside Story of Starbuck’s Race Together Campaign, No Foam. Retrieved from http://www.fastcompany.com/3046890/the-inside-story-of-starbuckss-race-together-campaign-no-foam

Masunaga, S. (2015, March 18). Starbucks Brews Up Controversy wity ‘Race Together’ Campaign. Retrieved from http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-starbucks-race-20150318-story.html

Meyer, K. (2016, January 14). Crisis Management 101: Starbucks Stirs the Pot with #RaceTogether Campaign. Retrieved from http://www.crowdbabble.com/blog/crisis-management-101-did-the-good-intentions-behind-starbucks-racetogether-pay-off/

Nichols, J. (2015, November 12). Starbucks Turns 97 Seattle Locations Into LGBT Safe Spaces. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/starbucks-turns-97-seattle-locations-into-lgbt-safe-spaces_us_5644df84e4b08cda3487e74e

Taylor, K. (2015, March 17). Why the Starbucks ‘Race Together’ Campaign Is Bad for Business. Retrieved from http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/244035

What ‘Race Together’ Means for Starbucks Partners and Customers. (2015, March 16). Retrieved from https://news.starbucks.com/news/what-race-together-means-for-starbucks-partners-and-customers

Winters, M. (2015, March 25). The Buzz: Still Not Ready to “Race Together”. Retrieved from http://www.theinclusionsolution.me/the-buzz-still-not-ready-to-race-together/


#Dove Encourages Kind Words on Social Media via the #SpeakBeautiful Campaign for a #SocialWin


speak beautiful tweet








By: Mackenzie Holden

In 2015, Dove teamed up with Twitter to create the #SpeakBeautiful campaign to encourage women to speak more kindly to each other on Twitter and other social media.  I participated in the campaign myself, as I saw it was a good opportunity to join the conversation on Twitter and tell my best friend how great she is at the same time.  Unlike other attempts at generating kindness via Twitter, Dove thought it best to reach out personally to as many contributors as possible to personally thank them for participating and spreading the love.  Just so happens I was one of them.  Dove replied to my tweet with a personal video (shown above) from one of their Self-Esteem Educators, Dre Brown.

Coca-Cola tried a similar campaign called #MakeItHappy where an automated generator would convert “mean tweets” into happy pictures.  However, Gawker hijacked the operation and turned all of the tweets into lyrics from Hitler’s Mein Kampf.  By personally replying to original tweets, Dove avoided malicious activity such as this.

The whole purpose of #SpeakBeautiful was to change the way women talk about beauty on social media, Twitter specifically.  Dove shared some startling statistics when they started the campaign, like 4 out of every 5 negative tweets about beauty and body image were women that were tweeting not about others, but about themselves.  The main message is that one positive message can knock down several negative messages by spreading love.  In just one day, over 30k tweets were sent out using the hashtag.

I felt personally compelled to join the movement because I saw how big of an impact it was having in such a short amount of time.  What I found most interesting about the campaign was that they released it during the 2015 Oscar awards.  They sent out a tweet that said the word “ugly” was tweeted 34,838 times during the red carpet.  What a compelling way to get people involved, especially when only 9% of women surveyed admitted that they participated in posting negative comments on Twitter.  Point is, no one wants to talk about it, and that’s what Dove wanted to bring to light.

I think the concept of the #SpeakBeautiful campaign is absolutely brilliant, and the way they planned and executed it was absolutely flawless.  I think seeing a social fail like coca-cola is the best way you to learn about what works and what doesn’t.  By partnering with Twitter itself, which is the 3rd favorite brand among that audience, it helped promote the campaign even more and give it some strong backing.  Replying to tweets with videos from their campaign managers was such a good way to show that they valued the conversation and what their followers were saying.  Also, the timing of the campaign was impeccable.  Using such a big stage as the Oscars as an example of the negative way we talk about beauty on social media was a great way to kick off the campaign and bring it to the forefront of a big topic of conversation.  The only thing I wish they would have done would be to further push the campaign and find new ways of keeping the conversation going.  I love that they stepped outside their usual way of teaching women how to love themselves and focused on loving each other just as much.


Bahadur, Nina. (2015, February 5). Dove and Twitter Launch #SpeakBeautiful to Change the Way We Talk About Beauty Online. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/02/19/speakbeautiful-dove-social-media_n_6713960.html

Florindi, Marissa. (2015, February 19). The Power is in Our Hands to #SPEAKBEAUTIFUL and Change the Conversation in Social Media. Retrieved from http://www.multivu.com/players/English/7447351-dove-twitter-speak-beautiful/

Hungerman, Audrey. (2015, February 23). Dove’s #SpeakBeautiful Twitter Campaign. Retrieved from http://blog.statsocial.com/doves-speakbeautiful-twitter-campaign/

Nudd, Tim. (2015, February 19,2015). Dove and Twitter Team Up to Address Hateful Tweets About Beauty On Oscar Night: Will Women #SpeakBeautiful? Retrieved from http://www.adweek.com/news/advertising-branding/dove-and-twitter-team-address-hateful-tweets-about-beauty-oscar-night-163040

Moye, Jay. (2015, January 26). #MaktItHappy: Coca-Cola’s Big Game Ad to Champion Online Positivity. Retrieved from http://www.coca-colacompany.com/stories/makeithappy-coca-colas-big-game-ad-to-champion-online-positivity/

Wolf, Nicky. (2015, February 5). Coca-Cola Pulls Twitter Campaign After it was Tricked Into Quoting Mein Kampf. Retrieved from http://www.theguardian.com/business/2015/feb/05/coca-cola-makeithappy-gakwer-mein-coke-hitler