I’m not embarrassed to say that I have been a fan of JT since he was robbed of his win on Ed McMahon’s Star Search. So when I heard the rumblings that he had a new album on the horizon (finally), I was amped.

Apparently, Target was too. Target has a history of partnering with artists to offer exclusive tracks on new albums and they worked out a partnership with JT to do just that.  JT launched the first single off the new album, The 20/20 Experience with a world premier performance at the 2013 Grammy Awards. In support of the partnership, Target aired a :30 second TV spot promoting the album.

According to a recent Google study, The New Multi-Screen World, 77% of the time we spend watching TV, we are simultaneously using other devices. Ever the innovators, Target capitalized on this behavior by jumping on the chance to promote JT’s new album to their social+mobile consumers at the same time the commercial aired. In tandem with the broadcast commercial, Target published a rich media post offering an exclusive pre-order of the album to their 21M+ Facebook fans, directly in their news feeds.

Check it out.



Here are a few of my observations:

1. Engagement Rates

Rich media posts have multiple points of engagement. The app-like functionality of these posts allows for multiple opportunities for users to interact with the content, creating a lift in engagement rates and stories generated per user – both which lead to increased impressions. Rich media post types have been known to receive engagement rates that are 60% higher than other Facebook post types and an average of 2.3 stories generated per/user.

2. Social Integration

Throughout the entire JT experience, there are opportunities to share through Facebook’s native tools (like, comment, share). Together with Twitter and Instagram integration, this type of sharing works to drive earned media impressions, social momentum and build hype for the March 19th release of the 20/20 Experience.

Justin Timberlake Twitter and Instagram

3. Multiple Funnel-Stages

Justin Timberlake 20/20 Experience

Target’s rich media post has elements that appeal to people who are in various stages of the consideration process. People who are in the exploration stage can find out more about the product through post copy, creative and by viewing the commercial – thereby aiding their decision. While those who are ready to purchase are able to pre-order the album on Target’s dot com.

There are a few things you may take-away from Target’s use of social media to promote the new JT album.

  • Choose the right post elements to drive maximum engagement.
  • Incorporate varying levels of engagement – from discovery, exploration and advocacy on to conversion.
  • Exclusive content works best!

Overall, this campaign was exceptionally innovative and smart. Target capitalized on a big event, The Grammy’s, and used the opportunity to market to an engaged, built-in audience. They addressed new insights regarding consumers’ viewing habits (especially around mobile) and in doing so, aligned broadcast, mobile and social. The cross-channel launch was timed perfectly. This enabled Target to capture attention of consumers across varied channels at the same time – decreasing fragmentation of the marketing message. And lastly, they pioneered a really cool new post type and served it to their consumers where they spend their time – in social streams.