GoPro – Always On

Social Media Campaign

Summary: Throughout this blog I will be delving into GoPro’s most successful social media campaign. Explaining the original goals and targets, the strategies and tactics employed and the financial and non financial impact the campaign generated all in order to determine the likely ROI.

GoPro – The Original Goal

GoPro has officially become the maker of the world’s most versatile camera, generating some of today’s most engaging viral content.

According to the Shorty Awards, “GoPro’s marketing vision has grown into empowering a generation of consumers and professional producers alike to capture, create and share their unique perspectives with the world”. Prompting individuals to upload their content to the GoPro website, the team are entertained by hours of footage on a daily basis, selecting there favourites and sharing them with the brands online community. A campaign both rewarding for the participants and the brand, with both name attached to hours of entertainment that generates free publicity for all involved.

However this wasn’t always the initial game plan; GoPro launched a campaign by hiring professional stuntmen and extreme athletes to showcase the capability of their small yet high performance cameras. They were unaware at the time that producing footage in this way would become such a phenomenon for so many, a trend that on estimation generates 6,000 videos shot with the camera everyday by consumers. With such a powerful recourse at hand, naturally GoPro created an ongoing campaign powered by its customer’s content.


The campaign was designed to drive and engage brand awareness, intent and growth of product sales through integrated online platforms, meanwhile developing a social community.

Strategy And Tactics

GoPro’s main aim was to build an ‘always-on’ shareable content distribution network. In effect a social ecosystem that would become the hub for the brands viral content, they achieved this by performing the following strategies:

‘Word of Mouth’ via an integrated marketing platform

Each video shared showcases every existing customers enthusiasm for the product, acting like a product review page, this strategy entices new customers by using social proof as a technique of persuasion, increasing both sales and brand visibility.

Gamification ‘Contest and Promotion’ strategy

In order to keep consumers engaged and participating in sharing their content, GoPro created an incentive; the opportunity for consumer’s footage to win exposure across the brands multiple platforms. Also giving the brand free publicity as it’s their consumers doing all the advertising for them.

To bring this strategy to life, GoPro’s founder & CEO, Nicholas Woodman, designed several simple campaign competition platforms that entice both new and existing customers to share their content. The campaigns are as follows:

  • Everything We Make: For people who did not yet own a GoPro but wanted a chance to win one.
  • Photo And Video of the Day: For customers, who regularly shared their best photos and videos with GoPro in social media. The brand rewards the top producers by showcasing their work through each of their online marketing channel:,,,com, GoPro App. These entrants also qualify for selection to be featured in other GoPro marketing assets such as general online ‘share programming’, print ads, billboards, and product packaging.
  • Video Distribution And TV – for customers who capture mind-blowing moments with their GoPro’s, the brand offers the opportunity to be featured in video distribution through their Youtube channel, TV advertising, & other video distribution channels such as Virgin America and Xbox.

The core aspects of the brands strategy on a whole are; customer content distribution, customer recognition, to be ‘always-on’ and connected, supporting shareable engagement and win opportunities.

What’s The Impact?

“By involving its fans in content creation, GoPro has built a loyal and engaged audience,” YouTube states in its report, as “The authenticity of the channels content helps viewers feel connected to the brand”. With the enthusiasm of their audience and new subscribers growing by the thousands each day, a cycle of content sharing is pushing sales continually. The brand is now seen as one of the most admired consumer brands due to its social media strategy and audience engagement.

Facts and Figurers:

The Shorty Awards stated; as of 2/7/2014:

Everything We Make Entries = 40K+ / day Visits = 300K+ / day Customer Photo & Video Submissions = 150+ / day
Facebook Fans =7M+, and growing by 2000 / day
Youtube Subscribers = 1.6M+, and growing by 2000 / day
Youtube Views = 400M+, and growing by 500K+ / day
Instagram Followers = 1.6M+, and growing by 25K / day 

Within GoPro’s recent quarterly report Nicholas Woodman stated, “We are seeing a tremendous volume of quality content generated by our users and a 200% year over year increase in video views on YouTube, which is fuelling our virtuous cycle whereby viewership of GoPro content drives sales. In our 2014 second quarter performance it demonstrates our users’ continued passion for GoPro’s products, content and brand.”

Likely ROI

Looking back at GoPro’s sales and marketing expenses beside their revenue and net income it’s clear to see that GoPro has the ability to get a satisfying return on investment.

The company managed to triple its revenue in 2011 and more than doubled sales in 2012. In 2013 again their revenue almost doubled again, surging 87% higher to $985.7 million and looking at the first quarter of 2014, the brand has already beaten its total revenue for all of 2011.

In 2011 GoPro’s net income reached $24.6 million, up 112% over the $11.6 million that was received in 2010, yet the brand only had to spend $50,515 more in marketing costs to achieve this. Spending $50,515 and getting $13 million more in return. In 2013 GoPro did even better, raising its marketing costs by $41,000 and making $28 million more in bottom line income than it did in 2012.

Looking at GoPro’s quarterly results; revenue in the second quarter of 2014 was $244.6 million, up 38.1% compared to the $177.1 million reported in the second quarter of 2013. Second quarter 2014 revenue increased 3.8% compared to $235.7 million reported in the first quarter of 2014.

Looking Back Trough The Lense  

It’s obvious that GoPro are pioneers when it comes to engaging their target audience. Creating a brand ecosystem that drives a sense of community, brand awareness and most importantly product sales. Relying on their consumers to spread word-of-mouth and then rewarding them with win opportunities. A simplistic campaign idea that has seen to be extremely beneficial both non-financially and financially.

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