A few weeks ago, I read a blog post by Seth Godin about the next viral music video. The video was posted to YouTube on September 3, 2013. As of today, the video has received more than 46 million views and quickly rising.
So what is this video that so many people have watched? Well, it’s a music video by a Norwegian comedy duo about the sounds different animals make with a focus on what the fox “says”. That is pretty much the video in a nutshell. But you really have to watch it to fully understand the viral-ness of it. Here it is for your viewing pleasure:
Most people stop there. They take the video at face value, maybe share it with their friends, get a good laugh, and move on. Like a virus, these kinds of videos spread until they don’t. But companies could stand to gain from some of these videos if they are smart about it.
Case in point: This commercial from the television network Fox (also below).
Fox took the song and used it to advertise their Fall show lineup. I’ve seen this from other companies as well. AIG used a viral home video posted to YouTube to make this commercial for their retirement services a few years back. While some companies (i.e. Dove) create their own videos which then go viral, not all companies have the same success.
Which is why I think what Fox and AIG (and other companies) did was creative. They took a video that was already liked by the public and then used it for their own advertising. What these companies (and their advertising agencies) clearly understood was that the online community was loving a specific video and so they rode that “viral” wave to their benefit. While this can backfire sometimes, I think the concept is smart. And in the case of Fox, it couldn’t have worked out better…I mean, could they get any more literal?