GOL, a Brazilian airline company, created an online ad campaign using Facebook. The purpose was to make the the number of fans on its Facebook page jump from 12K fans to over 200K fans in less than three days. It succeeded and became number one in its category. The way it did this was advertising through Facebook. The set up was simple. During Valentine’s weekend they posted on their Facebook page a series of images containing empty seats. The first users to see the images and comment the seat numbers won a pair of return tickets to any of GOL’s destinations.
I think this is a great initiative and an innovative way to use social media to advertise on the web. There was a problem, however. It doesn’t comply with Facebook’s promotions guidelines (facebook.com/promotions_guidelines.php). Facebook policy is to fight against spammers but in my opinion this was not spam. I think it is unnecessary that Gol received a warning from Facebook, although it is amazing that their fan base is now up to 600,000. I think the fact that this promotion was conceived by a Brazilian company speaks a lot to Brazil and their use of the internet. In a video we watched for class covering remix/mashup Brazil was listed as a country that is in the forefront when it comes to remixing music. Brazil seems to be a country that pushes the boundaries where the internet is concerned. The success of this ad campaign should make Facebook update its policies and it will be interesting to see how other advertisers can use social media in the future.