Kia looks to social media influencers for its Super Bowl marketing

Dive Brief:

  • A big piece of Kia’s Super Bowl advertising is a TV spot featuring Christopher Walken, but it’s also taking advantage of IBM’s Watson artificial intelligence software to find social media influencers.
  • Watson looked for specific influencer traits including “openness to change,” “artistic interest” and “achievement-striving,” according to the Wall Street Journal.
  • The goal is for influencers to amplify its message before and after the TV ad. 

Dive Insight:

After Watson found influencers for Kia, the car maker sent 100 colorful socks, which are part of the TV ad’s messaging, who will create and share content with the campaign hashtag, #AddPizzazz.

“Research has shown that the word choice we use when we communicate reflect aspects of our personality,” Steve Abrams, director of technology for Watson Ecosystem at IBM, told the Wall Street Journal. “They can say something about whether we’re introverted or extroverted…whether we value openness or adventure or value more conservatism.”

According to RhythmOne’s “2015 1H Influencer Marketing Benchmarks Report,” marketers that used influencer marketing saw a $9.60 return of earned media value (EMV) on average for every dollar of paid media spend.

Chuck Moran, vp of marketing at RhythmOne, told Marketing Dive, “From a marketing perspective, for somebody that has to sell up, the fact they can go to the CFO or whomever is influencing the marketing budgets, they can say it pays off. They can say, ‘Look, where else am I get that kind of return?’ The return on investment is incredible and I think it's a trend we'll see continue.”

Still, though social media influencers are seen as a powerful way to spread a marketing message, there are also concerns around measurement metrics.

Top image credit: Kia