Look at your brain, now back at mine. Now remain on NAIL’s Brain.
Does that sound familiar? Yes, I know I completely butchered it, but it might seem just a tad familiar. Your mind might have drifted to more masculine thoughts as you read the above few sentences, perhaps that charming Guiness World Records Champion who picked up that car, or an image of Sean Connery saying, “I must be dreaming,” (Goldfinger, 1964). OK, if your mind hasn’t recalled the following commercial, watch it. If your mind did remember this commercial, watch it again, just for the fun of it.
Isn’t that a great commercial? It has been watched over 11 million times on Youtube. That deserves a holy cow.
(Look, I’m an intern, how sophisticated do you expect my jokes to be? ) But my point is that the commercial is effective. It sticks in your mind. You love watching it. You could sit there all day and watch the commercial. You memorize the commercial (or at least, I did) and never forget it. That is effective, successful advertising.
Now, in an effort to duplicate that success, Old Spice has released a new commercial, with the same actor and same basic tone. Take a look.
Good, right? Sure, they did a fine job with this commercial. But something about doesn’t speak to me in the same way the first one does. Perhaps it’s the freshness of the humor, the smoothness of the first one, and even the overall simplicity of the the first commercial. But the second spot is definitely not as unbelievably awesome.
But a couple days ago, Old Spice made this debate all but irrelevant.
Their agency, Weiden Kennedy orchestrated a brilliant melding of traditional advertising and social media savvy and speed. They had their hunky spokesperson, Isaiah Mustafa, answer the Internet in real time. Responding to actual Tweets on Twitter or comments on Facebook, they wrote, filmed, edited and uploaded more than 180 over the course of two days.
If you go to the Old Spice Twitter page, you can see that this ambitious exercise took on a life of its own as they reacted to the reactions. This was genius on so many levels—from choosing whom to respond to (a careful mix celebrities, web influencers and regular folks) to writing consistently funny material, to resisting the temptation to map out a plan for it all, rather just letting the tides of the web taking it where it would go and reacting accordingly.
There are so many levels on which this is brilliant and they have been and will continue to be dissected and critiqued all over the blogosphere (as they planned). And if you didn’t experience it in real time, or don’t have a clear picture of how this worked and why it was awesome, you need spend some time digging into this because this is the future. And ummmmmm… it smells good.