Most brand briefs take it for granted these days that “sharing” is a key measure of success, and that making it big on Facebook and YouTube is a holy grail of advertising, combining the most desirable features of peer advocacy, and “free”. But let’s face it, most people don’t want to share ads – the viral video chart is a constant reminder that Evian’s Rollerbabies and VW’s The Force are the outliers, not the norm, compared with videos that truly share.
Worse, quite a few brands set out from the start to create what they call “virals” – videos shot for the web with smaller budgets, that are expected to magically outperform the scale advertising productions designed for the TV screen.
OK, why not. Sometimes works.
But things start to go madly wrong when the brief takes the “viral” obective at heart so much, that it forgets the “marketing” part altogether.
VIRAL IS NOT MARKETING.
Just because something is viewed, and actually is good enough to spread, does not mean that it’s doing a marketing job. And the video below is the saddest example of creativity gone to waste. Believe it or not, this was actually made to promote a movie. Watch it and take a wild guess.
Did you guess the movie?
Well that’s too bad. 1,6 million viewers are probably like you, completely unaware of what this is for. Not a hint there that this promotes anything. No tie whatsoever with a brand, movie, nothing.
“Fortunately”, this second reveal video was later released to solve the mystery:
OK, now you got it (assuming you let it play until the end, which is a bit of a stretch since it’s essentially 90% the same as the first). Too bad this second video only got 72,000 hits, isn’t it?