Tech brands get creative with social media during CES 2018 blackout

Power outage at one of the world's largest technology and electronics shows triggers flurry of brand engagement via Twitter

Technology brands including Intel and IBM have been quick to jump into the social conversation with a tongue-in-cheek brand approach after a blackout struck the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas.

The blackout in the Las Vegas Convention Centre’s Central and South Hall bridge meeting rooms occurred at approximately 11.13am local (Pacific) time on the second day of the show. While power within the South Hall was restored minutes later, it took two hours to fully restore power in the Central Hall, with conference organisers confirming on Twitter at 1.09pm that power was slowly being rolled out in the Central Hall.

In a statement, CES organiser, the Consumer Technology Association, blamed the outage on recent heavy rainfall which caused condensation on the venue’s roof to short circuit one of the facility’s transformers.

“A preliminary assessment indicates that condensation from heavy rainfall caused a flashover on one of the facility's transformers,” the statement read. “We are grateful to NV Energy for their swift assistance, to our customers and their clients for their patience and to the staff for ensuring the safety and security of all attendees and exhibitors.”

Many attendees and technology journalists were quick to point out the irony of one of the world’s largest technology electronics showcases without power. One attendee, Bert Kaufman, head of corporate affairs and regulatory at robotics company Zoox, summed it up on Twitter: 

“The power has gone out in the central hall at CES… sending thousands of attendees out of the LVCC, shutting down hundreds of expensive marketing activations and reminding us that none of this stuff works without electricity,” he tweeted.  

Another attendee, Derek Kerton, asked which brands were going to make the most of the blackout opportunity on their stands, and compared the situation to the blackout during the US Super Bowl. Oreo’s quick and clever response on Twitter, ‘Power out? No Problem. You can still dunk in the dark’, continues to be heralded by many as a great example of real-time social media engagement.

Technology brands including Intel, IBM, ISPN and Texas Instruments were quick to jump onto the #CESblackout hashtag, with many taking a cheeky communications approach to the situation. Here are some of the highlights

Intel, for example, suggested the blackout was the biggest thing to hit the CES show since 5G: 


IBM took the opportunity to highlight its artificial intelligence offering, IBM Watson:

ISPN was arguably, however, the funniest:

And there were plenty more:


This year’s CES is expected to attract more than 180,000 visitors, has 4000 exhibitors and runs from 9 to 12 January 2018.

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO conversation on LinkedIn: CMO ANZ, join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia, or check us out on Google+:google.com/+CmoAu

 

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Blog Posts

Cannes 2018: The Big Not Easy

This year’s Cannes Lions program is packed full of data, robots, algorithms, voice technology, blockchain, virtual reality, artificial intelligence and machine creativity. But I’m just as interested in more subtle trends and insights.

Richard Brett

CEO, opr

CMOs are talking the CX talk, but not yet walking the walk

Customer experience is eclipsing product as a competitive differentiator. CMOs are recognising this shift and talking the talk. But are they also walking the walk?

Will our manners go the same way as texting when robotic servants take over?

Much of the talk in the industry is focused on the limited amount of time that screens have left in our lives.

Katja Forbes

Founder and chief, sfyte

You're suggesting that Taylor Swift is a non-brand because we don't know who she votes for, and then you suggest developing brand stories...

Brian 't Hart

Why Gartner thinks brands are too uptight about strategy

Read more

Indeed this is the great article but i will love to recommend you to read the case study of Walamrt for get the more and more customers. ...

Eva Buttler

5 steps to customer intelligence success

Read more

here is the good news now you can find the all adobe products at walmart .. read this news here at https://creditcardsfair.com/

Yasir Abbas

Adobe: Tech architecture, talent stopping companies making the experience shift

Read more

Google is more like a utility. Does a road have a brand? No. Do we use it daily? Of course! And the idea of Taylor Swift as an unbrand be...

Davy Adams

Why Gartner thinks brands are too uptight about strategy

Read more

My father had ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) for 3 years His first symptoms were weakness in his hands and losing his balance which ...

Janice Tollis

Why Gartner thinks brands are too uptight about strategy

Read more

Latest Podcast

More podcasts

Sign in