“Tweeting” honey badger drums up business for Johannesburg Zoo

It’s a lot of work keeping up a Twitter feed, but it’s even harder when you have claws.

That hasn’t stopped BG, Johannesburg Zoo’s resident – and now famous – media-savvy honey badger, who “tweets” at @ZooTweetsLive. Armed with the desire to boost crowds and overall awareness – but limited funds – the Jo’burg Zoo appointed BG as the world’s first “live-tweeting badger.”

How does it work? As BG wanders around his enclosure, he sets off infrared motion sensors, six in all, or cameras, all strategically rigged throughout his habitat. This triggers one of hundreds of prewritten tweets, some combined with a snapshot of the moment. Who can resist this bathing beauty?

The honey badger has made his rounds in the media circus, including TED Talks, Time, MSN, Huffington Post, and more. Was it a success? You bet. With 5,000 followers in the first week alone, 618% return on investment, and six million dollars earned media, BG’s campaign is a smash. While zoo visitor numbers aren’t available, it’s clear the digital world has gone mad for the badge.

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Rad ad to travelers: Drop everything and go

Whoever crafted this compelling campaign for the adventurous at heart deserves a gold medal (or at least a few frequent flier miles).

Behold: Departure Roulette / Heineken Dropped.

The company plucks airport travelers en route to their flights and asks if they’d like to tempt fate and push a button, activating a departure board that spits out a random destination. Seems like fun, until you take into account the rule that defines the game: you must commit to leave for that destination at that very moment. Hey, you’re already packed. That bachelor party can wait, right?

Several hardy travelers took the plunge and scattered across the globe to far-flung locales like Morocco, Cambodia, and Alaska, documenting their journeys for Heineken.

Bon voyage!