Orange: Secret Twitter portraits

Following on from its innovative Tweetagram service from a few months ago the mobile operator is once again utilising the immediacy of the micro-blogging network to offer a customised user experience.

Whereas the Tweetagram promotion offered to transform your mundane tweets into bespoke mini musicals courtesy of a singing trio, it’s latest campaign, Secret Portraits, aims to highlight the people behind the 140 character tweets by developing mini works of art.

The brand has teamed up with a selection of illustration students from UCA to execute the design aspect of the new social media concept. Users of the service simply have to describe themselves and what they are currently doing while adding the hashtag #secretportraits. If the message intrigues the group of illustrators they will then delve around in your Twitter profile to find out more about you and deliver a hand-crafted portrait.

It’s a clever idea that plays on the notion of privacy. This is permission marketing in the extreme, whereby customers are effectively allowing the brand to gather personal information in order to build a profile of a particular user. Yes, the information is readily available, but it is still a step towards a more intimate relationship between a brand and potential consumers.

Orange is championing an innovative use of Twitter that doesn't require a vast financial outlay, all it takes is the ability to engage in a bit of quality ‘social listening’ rather than barking out indiscriminate 140 tweets. Furthermore, it sees the brand actively supporting the arts and emerging design talent by partnering with a selection of new young creatives.

Increasingly it is this simple yet ingenious use of the immediate and personalised Twitter experience that brands need to be tapping into in order to get the most out of a medium that thrives on users ‘Status Envy’.

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