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How a baby giraffe taught us business

Why not make your own emoji to create buzz for your own marketing campaign?



What are your plans for your next marketing campaign? Could your business use a brand exposure boost?

You may want to take a lesson from the Animal Adventure Park in New York. April the Giraffe is close to giving birth any moment now.

Millions worldwide have been captivated on YouTube, watching April the Giraffe’s journey to giving birth (and yes, I’m guilty to admit I too am one of them!).

While following April’s progress from when the Adventure Park thought she was near her delivery date may have started to be a simple enough event, the world began to take notice and April’s pregnancy quickly went viral.

Interestingly, the live feed was installed to help the staff monitor her without needing to be in the barn 24-7. They thought it would be fun to make this feed available to the public at the same time.

Little did they know within days they would have millions of viewers watching April’s every move, anxious to not miss the big event.

In fact, if you read the comments on their Facebook page, you’ll see just how many are intently keeping tabs on the big girl and her mate Oliver in the pen next to her.

While being a daily follower (good thing I have 3 monitors so can always easily check in to see what she’s up to), the huge success of this campaign has me thinking about the lessons we business owners can learn about strengthening our brand identity using this unique case study.

5 ways you can build your business exposure:

Live video

Who can resist the thought of seeing a baby animal? Baby animals are a huge draw and April’s soon-to-be-born baby is no exception.

Having a live video allows people to feel they are a part of the experience. Aside from YouTube, Facebook LIVE, Instagram Stories, and Snapchat all have a live feed ability. What can you share live that your followers would find of interest?

Remember people don’t want to be marketed to; they want to be a part of something and be entertained.  And once they become part of the story, they get addicted.  Live video is a great marketing and an excellent way of building your brand reach.


Not only has the Animal Adventure Park gotten incredible visibility out of April the giraffe, but they also turned it into a revenue generating activity. If you notice, Toys R Us is a sponsor for their video feed.  That’s an excellent fit considering their Geoffrey the Giraffe is the mascot of Toys R Us and kids love the zoo.  The Park set up a Go Fund Me Account and a page asking for other corporate sponsors who want to cash in on the exposure for their brand.

Social media

Twice a day, updates are added to the Park’s Facebook page giving their fans insider information about April’s progress. Fans get to see close-up pictures and read about the latest vet reports of this mama Giraffe to be.  This has been a very effective hook to boost Facebook likes for their business page.

Custom emoji

Emoji’s have become a very popular part of pop culture and the Adventure Park capitalized on this by offering an April the Giraffe emoji to their fans.

Why not make your own emoji to create buzz for your own marketing campaign? Make it easy for fans to spread the news for you! Plus, emoji’s are downright fun. Who can resist?

Live chats

Every night the Park staff enable the live chat feature on YouTube and respond to as many fans as possible. It literally is a zoo during these chats! Thousands show up to ask questions, make a donation to boost their question’s visibility, and be a part of the whole experience.

Facebook LIVE is a great tool to facilitate live chats. It provides an opportunity for you to showcase your expertise as well as your brand and offer a way for your followers to get to know, like and trust you more.

Launch your own viral campaign

Today’s media has changed the way consumers interact with brands.  Your potential customers are exposed to thousands of marketing messages every day.

No one wants to be sold to, but everyone wants to buy.

Which companies do they choose to shop with?  The ones who create community, engagement, and an incredible brand experience just like how the Animal Adventure Park did.

So stick your neck out like April the Giraffe has and you’ll give birth to greater sales and visibility for your business.

DISCLAIMER: This article expresses my own ideas and opinions. Any information I have shared are from sources that I believe to be reliable and accurate. I did not receive any financial compensation in writing this post, nor do I own any shares in any company I’ve mentioned. I encourage any reader to do their own diligent research first before making any investment decisions.

Susan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence. As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.