Twitter is a hosting ground for contentious conversations — particularly during this election season. But its marketers are hoping a new ad campaign stays in neutral territory.
After noticing its users expressing growing mask-wearing fatigue on its platform, Twitter launched a pro-mask out-of-home campaign in seven U.S. cities on Sunday. The billboards, in Chicago, Asbury Park, Jersey City, Los Angeles, Miami Beach, and Seattle, highlight user tweets about life under a mask during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The tone is light and community-minded, showcasing tweets such as “Best thing about these masks is I can sing along to my music without looking like a weirdo,” and, “Why do I feel like everyone’s giving me Resting Mask Face?”
Twitter worked with iDEKO, an event and experiential agency, on the campaign, which extends beyond billboards to include murals and sidewalk art in high-traffic urban areas such as Chicago’s Millennium Park, Times Square in New York City and Sunset Boulevard in Los Angeles.
Mask wearing is one of the most popular topics on Twitter, with some 100 million tweets on the subject since March.
“As always, the people on Twitter say it best,” said Leslie Berland, Twitter’s CMO and head of people, in a statement. “Masks are a huge conversation around the world and we’re happy to help cities tackle mask caution-fatigue with Tweets that will make people smile and hopefully mask-up.”
To tie its platform into the campaign, Twitter is enabling the mask emoji in direct messages. Anytime a user tweets #WearAMask, they’ll be rewarded with an animated mask emoji sequence. The platform is also updating company-owned accounts to feature the mask emoji.
Twitter’s most-liked Tweet in July promised users: “You can have an edit button when everyone wears a mask.”
This isn’t the first time Twitter has highlighted user posts as part of an OOH campaign. For Valentine’s Day, the platform showcased funny user tweets about love and marriage. In June, it put up billboards supporting Black Lives Matter in flashpoint cities for protests against police violence, such as Atlanta and Minneapolis.