Which Companies Aced Marketing in January 2022?

We all want to start off the year right, whether it’s with a new diet or gym routine, or that commitment to smash your day job and work as hard as you can to get ahead this year.

Same goes for companies, so I thought I’d share with you some of my favourite marketing campaigns from January, in case you need any inspiration for your February, March, or beyond. Looking at what others are doing is a great way to take stock and look for best practices. Each of these ads or campaigns smashed it for a different reason, but each of them is really clever and provides learnings that we can all use to be better at marketing.

I want to start with my personal favourite, Spotify billboards tell us all how it really is…


At a time of year when perhaps more of us than usual are going through something, this ad hits the nail on the head as of course we all want to be fine, but are we really when it’s just us and what was our favourite song? Whilst this may appear cruel, it’s a clever tongue in cheek moment that people identify with, and even if it’s something you aren’t going through right now, you’re still curious to check out this playlist, just to check if Spotify really did get this right for anyone who is in this position. While it gets those of us who are Spotify regulars checking back in, it’s also a good cushion for those looking for a little love to reach out to.

Spotify, of course, runs huge marketing campaigns and has over 170 million users, so seeing the brand around brings us all some comfort, but also cements its place in everyday life more and more. Impressive to think that 10 years ago we were all downloading from iTunes and buying CDs in HMV. Really does seem like a distant memory, doesn’t it?

Away from the physical world and onto the wonder on Twitter, another of my favourite marketing wins come from McDonald’s

McDonald’s have become known for their campaigns in recent years. Every bus stop and billboard seems to belong to them within a 5-mile radius of one of their restaurants, so you’re never in doubt of where to get your next delicious burger. This January however, it wasn’t so much a campaign they spent months creating, but their reactive nature on Twitter joining the conversation on Crypto that left McDonald’s being trolled for days.

Just take a look through the replies, they go on for days! Many of them talk about McDonald’s own failings that it has long known about and uses to its advantage in these situations. Yes, the ice cream machine is always broken, but you’ll still try your best to get one every week. This collective knowledge that we all have of the brand and products is what Maccies always wants us to remember, so the more the name is mentioned, the better.

Sticking with fast food on Twitter, one brand I’ve been watching ever since the chicken shortage and the absolute legend of an advert featuring that empty bucket and the clever rearrangement to FCK, is, of course, KFC 🐔

Well, this time they have got creative again and teamed up with Pokemon, something which has been so successful in January 2022 with the release of a new game Pokemon Legends Arceus. Using this classic graphic that used to feature prominently on children’s tv advertising, this clever digital campaign is coupled with the ever-popular caption new burger, who dis, this ad relates directly to its target market in a way that makes it humorous and highly shareable. Plus, this burger is delicious, I can’t lie!

A common theme with both KFC and McDonalds that all marketing campaigns can aspire to do is admit when things went wrong. It happens and acknowledging it makes your brand more human, trustworthy, and tweetable.

Okay, I’m done with Twitter, but I don’t think I’ll ever be done talking about food. We all know that Beanz Meanz Heinz, but did you see what happened in January?

So for Veganuary this year, Heinz did a limited run of baked beans packaged in new branding that states Beanz Meanz Vegan. Something obvious, or perhaps not, depending on how new you are to vegan living. There are so many products that are being remade to make them accessible to Vegans, that those who always have been don’t want to get left behind. If you’re doing your first shop in January as a vegan for the month, you want things to be easy. What could be easier than the biggest word on the front saying Vegan? Well done Heinz! Absolutely smashing marketing for what is a really popular campaign each year.

Something a little different, has everyone noticed that Wordle is taking over the internet? Or Twitter in particular. If you haven’t noticed, where have you been? I recommend you go and read this great article on Wordle for all the information you need to know.


Wordle is a great word game that gives you 6 opportunities to guess the word, each guess has to be a real 5 letter word, and each guess is colour-coded to show you which letters are correct, in the right order, etc. What’s really fueled the enormous growth of Wordle as detailed in this article on the Guardian is the share function at the end of each daily puzzle. Twitter is becoming covered in these little blocks as people share their success or commissary. For those who have no idea what’s happening, after a few days, weeks, months, surely they just can’t fight that curiosity to find out what has all of their friends hooked, waiting for midnight every night. Very clever marketing, Wordle.

Did I say I’m done with Twitter… I meant done with brands using Twitter. Not to be missed is Twitter promoting Twitter and the incredible transformations of some of the biggest celebrities on the planet.

This heartwarming campaign placed billboards in some of the busiest cities on earth including New York, London, Paris, Los Angeles that displayed tweets from celebrity accounts before they were famous. Showing the progression of some of the biggest stars of our time. The tweets included the date and time, so they can really be found. All the way down the feed, with 0 likes. Sometimes it’s important to remember the human side of social media and that we are all on a journey, and while today online looks very aspirational, it wasn’t always that way for the people that we look up to.

Don’t forget, we aren’t all Twitter and we have to be realistic with what we can do right now, but if you need any help with your brand’s social media, organic or paid, why not let Embryo take a look?

Finally, I think it’s only right that we give a bit of love to Team Embryo, while we aren’t lighting up Times Square yet, we have absolutely smashed January 2022 marketing for our clients and for ourselves.

Our social media accounts are looking amazing, we’ve got brilliant merch and we are continuing to push out amazing technology for our clients including an industry first, Intermingle. This impressive software takes snapshots of SERP and documents them to give you a full picture of your brand’s coverage across organic, paid, local, shopping, FAQs and related. Nothing else can do this so we’re able to give this exclusivity to our clients and use this to further advance their organic and paid efforts. What’s more, we picked up incredible coverage in the Telegraph, who explored our office dogs policy, and we’ve been working extensively to get all our staff trained on the Messy Middle, which will influence so much strategy for our clients in 2022.

January is already off to a flying start, but if you need a little help upping your own marketing game, need a bit of direction, or just need some general advice, we’re always delighted to hear from you. You can get in touch with us about any of our services, any time. We will also get back to you, be honest and give you our honest opinions. So, ready to grow together?


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