J&J went live on Facebook yesterday to share their Champions of Science, The Lab Coat of the Future finalists’ competition. It was completely unbranded and simply focused on science. Their key message was that the lab coat is an integral symbol of innovation and science, yet it has not been updated in over a century. The objective of the competition was to grant the group with the best idea to innovate the lab coat with a $50,000 award.
My interest in this tactic is not the content of the video nor the objective of the competition itself, but rather the means that J&J chose to host the grand finale of the competition; via Facebook live video.
This was a well chosen medium because it made it ideal to promote the event and create hype for it online, meaning that a much larger audience could hear and learn about it. It also created the potential for a much, much larger audience than would have been possible had the event been held in front of a live audience only. This allowed over 11K views of the live Facebook video. The finalists must have appreciated this large audience, whether they won or not, because it means that their work was made visible to a much larger audience and potentially to an investor as well.
When Mark Zuckerberg announced the new Facebook algorithm that would allow people to focus on their friends’ posts, he did allude to the face that live Facebook videos would still be a priority feature on page followers’ homepages. Live Facebook videos remain a method of reaching a lot of eyeballs, and it is still free. Keep in mind that when you have over 776K followers like J&J’s Facebook page, the odds would definitely be in your favor for getting a large online audience.
Note that there were no ads listed under their ad tab on the day of the live Facebook video. It is not known if they had advertised on Facebook days prior to their live broadcast. I am not certain if J&J took advantage of the Facebook stories feature when they were promoting their live broadcast. If so, then I missed it. If not, then I would certainly recommend that to whoever is hoping to replicate this type of activity.
A live Facebook video also has the option of living on, getting engagement from viewers during the broadcast as well as afterwards. For example, after almost 24 hours after the live J&J Champions of Science broadcast, the video was viewed over 11K times, has been shared 146 times, received 465 reactions (all positive or neutral) and 225 comments.
The live broadcast was even talked about on Twitter with the hashtag #ChampionsOfScience, with 559 posts by 235 users (Source: Keyhole). There are 127 Instagram posts with the hashtag #ChampionsOfScience , however many of these are either from a much earlier date and a few seemed to be completely unrelated to the event.
On a personal note, I hope that we will see more pharmaceutical events such as this one showcased live on Facebook, because this will show the general public that pharma companies do a lot of good work within their communities, and often do not get recognized for them. Kudos to J&J!
Congratulations to the winners and best of luck to the two other finalists in finding another investor for your ideas.