Thanksgiving Day was originally a national holiday celebrated in Canada and the United States, but is now becoming popular all over the world! It is celebrated as a day of giving thanks for the blessing of the harvest and of the preceding year. Here are 10 brands that came up with the best Thanksgiving campaigns, and touched people’s hearts and minds!

  1. Coca cola

Being a big well-known global brand, Coca-cola is no stranger when it comes to creating the best campaigns throughout the years. It is well-known to come up with great campaigns for promoting a new product or just riding along the new and hottest trend of the period.

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Last year for their Thanksgiving Campaign, Coca-cola tweeted a series of pictures of people dressed up in their iconic red and white colours, posing as telemarketers – complete with headphones/microphone set. The caption read, “ Talk to an “expert” for important Coca-Cola–related Thanksgiving questions/wonderings. Call 1-866-844-8327.”

  1. Macy’s

Thanksgiving wouldn’t be the same without a worthy mention of Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York. The parade, held annually, is a tradition dating way back to the 1920s. Complete with balloon and floats, musicals and marching bands gracing the streets of Manhattan, brands that manage to get into the parade are guaranteed TV coverage reaching more than 44 million viewers.

At first glance, the Macy’s website doesn’t seem any different than usual (apart from the huge sales signs), but once you click on the Thanksgiving banner you’re taken to a page that is solely dedicated to the Thanksgiving Day Parade and everything else it encompasses. There’s a countdown timer to the parade and more information than you know what to do with. Macy’s has created a fancy user experience aimed at really getting the audience involved in the magic of the parade.

  1. KFC

KFC made use of its debut in the 2015 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade to give younger consumers a history lesson on its founder, Colonel Harland Sanders.

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A social media campaign with the hashtag #ColonelsRoadTrip depicted the face of KFC, Colonel Sanders himself, making the trip from Kentucky to New York. “The different stops along the way commemorate [Sanders’] ride to becoming the world’s most famous and successful chicken salesman,” said KFC CMO Kevin Hochman.

  1. The travel channel

With the holiday season comes holiday getaways, and the Travel Channel opted for a subtle approach to the Thanksgiving season. Their website featured “Hot Topic” links, which would take the users directly to what’s trending and, of course, Thanksgiving tops the list.

The Travel Channel hasn’t bombarded its homepage with Thanksgiving accolades, but it does have a subtle call to action that will reach out to the seasonal jet-setters amongst us. It has several hints at Thanksgiving deals and offers, without forcing information into the audience’s throat.

They utilized #TravelTuesday to generate conversations about Thanksgiving and share occasional Tweets about the holiday, without being too overwhelming. This approach has worked well for the Travel Channel, as its campaign allows the customers to know about the various offers out there without being forced to commit.

  1. McDonalds

Since 1993, McDonald’s owner/operator Julián Nabozny has served complimentary breakfast to thousands of South Phoenix residents on Thanksgiving morning. What begun as a simple gesture of gratefulness has become a highly anticipated event for the South Phoenix community. Today, the event serves over 4,000 complimentary breakfasts to local residents and provides thousands of families a fun-filled start to their Thanksgiving holiday.

6. Campbell

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Campbell pulled out all stops in 2012 and launched a massive Pinterest campaign which tapped into the emotional atmosphere underlying Thanksgiving, all the while providing food for those who needed it. They did it by donating $1 to Feeding America for every image of a Campbell’s casserole pinned to a Thanksgiving menu board on Pinterest by their followers.

  1. Whole foods

Like most food chain stores out there, Whole Foods honed in on Thanksgiving meals to increase its sales. Whole Foods did this through an integrated social media campaign that was rooted on its homepage. On the site you could find all kinds of fabulous Thanksgiving recipes under their ‘Holiday Cheat Sheets’, as well as informative articles about choosing the right products.

  1. Subway

Subway took their Thanksgiving themed campaign to Vine last year by encouraging people to “pregame” before a Thanksgiving dinner with their turkey sandwiches.

  1. Nike Turkey Bowl”

Nike’s 2013 Thanksgiving marketing campaign used mobile app advertising to boost its Hyperwarm line while engaging customers in a really creative way. When customers used apps in the SessionM mobile app network, the Nike campaign rewarded the in-app actions with points, which could then be redeemed for prizes like gift cards. Once customers redeemed their points, the Nike Turkey Bowl ads would pop up.

This was a brilliant marketing strategy because it rewarded customers for interacting with their ad. While many mobile customers would be annoyed at a typical pop-up ad, this campaign offered something in exchange for their time. With mobile media taking off, companies that can creatively engage customers on this platform will see huge benefits.

  1. Publix

Publix is an employee-owned, American supermarket chain based in Lakeland, Florida. During Thanksgiving, the marketing team always comes out with sincere commercials. One of such commercials featured three families with diverse ethnic backgrounds, subtly embracing and celebrating the varied roots of the United States. The yearly Publix commercials like these are also great because they rely on simple emotions to bond with their customers. As holidays like Thanksgiving become more hectic every year, this form of Thanksgiving marketing reminds everyone of simple, enjoyable moments and time spent with loved ones.

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