Don't Stop the Party Rock

How sick is this video?

I'm a little biased. I've known Red Foo for 20 years. Been to his mom's house. Gave him career advice (which he probably didn't need and certainly didn't follow), when he was a teenager sleeping on the floor of a studio off of Crenshaw Blvd. He produced a track for my first record deal — a demo deal with (then Columbia Records a&r) Randy Jackson for a girl group I managed. Okay, I know a demo deal isn't a real record deal; that's not the point.

The point is I want this guy to win, and he is. Big. People all over the world are unable to keep themselves from dancing to this track. Even the Kia Soul hamsters are in on the fun. So what's the problem?

I don't get Kia. It's obvious that want to be cool so bad. And they're close. The first round of Soul commercials (sock monkey, robot) weren't bad. The hamsters are brilliant. Then they have some half-assed experiential programming — you know, hire the usual guys to do the usual parties, get coverage on the usual blogs. Who cares? They're like Scion-lite with better TV spots.

What if they facilitated these Party Rock flash mobs? Set-up shuffle contests and impromptu dances everywhere? Capture it all on camera and really take that movement to the fullest? Make Kia Soul synonymous with dancing your ass off. Start with the shuffle and move on to other kinds of dances, done in public for fun and profit. That's a brand that sounds like fun.

The Bad News About Old Spice

Old Spice’s man on the horse has set the bar for corporate social media. And why not? Seems like the whole world saw it and shared their reactions online. Millions of users posted their consumer feedback. They watched the ads over and over again on YouTube, commented, liked it, voted for it, replied to it, and initiated an Internet frenzy with a strong link to the brand. The metrics are certainly off the chart compared to anything else Old Spice has ever done in marketing.

The detractors will tell you that the online consumer response didn’t move the needle on sales of Old Spice products. In fact, there was a spike in sales that might also be attributed to discounted pricing that ran concurrently with the ad campaign.

Do you want the truth? Can you handle the truth?

Truth is, they’re both wrong. Old Spice looks good in the short-term, and not so good in the intermediate-term. But the real win for the brand is to be had over the long-term. What Old Spice has essentially done is bought the attention of millions of consumers who had previously not paid attention to the brand before this campaign.

Think about what this long-term success means for the brand’s next campaign. What defines a brand at its core is building viewer expectation and setting precedence. Viewers are now watching and waiting to see what Old Spice does next.

If the brand reemerges soon with similarly brilliant entertainment content, the reception will be tremendous. If it can successfully repeat this process over and over, you can be certain that years from now, Old Spice will be enjoying the fruits of its investments.

See folks, social media — just like all marketing, business, and life — is a marathon, not a sprint. You don’t get to work out one day and then sit back and admire your abs the next day. Nobody places a single stock trade and then retires.

Old Spice just expended a lot of money, energy, and creative genius in order to earn the right to do it again. Most companies haven’t earned that right, so Old Spice currently enjoys a tremendous advantage over the corporate social media status quo. If you think that’s a raw deal, you’re probably in the wrong business.

Why Isn't Your Video Viral? Does it have people in it doing superhuman shit like this one? Does it have anything that anyone who doesn't work for your company would care about? Or is it just a clever new name for a commercial?

Unless you answered Yes, Yes, No, in that order, there's your problem.

What's even cooler about this video than all of the action sports stunts and other insanity is that it's a music video. A band called Hadouken took popular clips from the web and cut them into their own video. Legal? Maybe not. Genius? For sure.

Pearl Izumi Video

These guys get it. Not only do they make great products, but they understand there's nothing like making the kids giggle to get the cash register ringing.

Okay, this might be too edgy for some brands, but what can you do to make people laugh and maybe think you're kinda clever? Post a comment here or let us know if you need help thinking of something.

Social Media Gone Wrong… The New 5

"> Disclaimer: This post may not be all that helpful.

I just need to vent. I've just come from the YouTube page for the United States Treasury, which features a "viral" video for the new $5 bill, as well as an unveiling of the new $100.

The $100 spot offers a walkaround as if to show us the features of a new car, while the $5 clip is a little infomercial packed with consumer reactions.

This is complete insanity. Why would anyone feel the need to market money? And where did they get the money to market money? Who approved this? There's a long list of people who need to be fired immediately.

My guess is this is a case of someone taking the job a little too seriously and paying too much attention to all of the hype around social media. Sure, over 800,000 people watched the Ben Franklin video, but so what? Most of those people don't have jobs, and won't be getting their hands on a bill anytime soon. And even if they do, so what?

It seems obvious to me that money has no intrinsic value. That is, it doesn't matter how nice the bill is, or how much it costs to print. The only thing that matters is what I can buy with it. Am I missing something? Is there some conceivable reason why it would be important for me to feel good about the $5 bill in my pocket, other than the fact that I can take it out of my pocket to buy a Hot Pocket? Or something else cheap that rhymes with pocket?

Someone please tell me why this makes sense. I would have written them directly, but of course comments have been disabled on the page.