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Viral Videos for Brands: When these worlds collide you better go 'all in' to win

Creating viral videos for brands is tricky business: Usually, the videos that go viral have nothing to do with anything other than awesomeness…brands well, they have an agenda that isn’t usually super-share-worthy.

It can get tricky when these worlds collide, but when done right (right style, message and execution for the right product) it can be, well, awesome. Remember The Old Spice Guy from 2011 or is that too retro now? Witness the latest ridiculous…and ridiculously successful, viral video, posted 2 days before I’m writing this for Vytautas Mineral Water :

Now depending on your appreciation of the absurd – and what side of the ‘easily offended fence’ you fall on, you may not enjoy this sort of thing – yet you can’t dispute the numbers: the English version has over 260,000 views in two days…not too shabby!

The obvious thorniness of this particular video is the edgy tone of piece – that would make most brand managers balk at the idea of going so far down the viral path  – so it’s clearly not for everyone. If you look deeper, you’ll see how they cleverly have packed this video with branding, explained the value of the product from several angles and (I’d wager) kept the majority of the audience glued to the screen for the full 2.5 minutes, that’s a long ad!

It’s an interesting case study and will worth following up in a month as it grows audience but in the mean time, here are my key take-aways are this:

  • Beware the temptation to make your brand’s videos ‘viral': In development, ask yourself: ‘ is this concept really share-worthy and to what degree might my brand’s image be at risk’ with similar audience centric viral tactics?’
  • It may be better to focus on safer brand-message focused videos that will surely  garner a smaller – yet more targeted – audience (eg:I loved the water video but will never buy it).
  • If you really want to get viral, you HAVE TO put your audience first and find smart ways to work in your message, or they will see right through it and won’t share.

Did you find this helpful? Then please do me a solid and share, ‘like’, and follow below. Really, please do!

Dane Frederiksen
Digital Accomplice

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