There are very few people or establishments without a social media presence now. Facebook has become our virtual passport, allowing us to “like” everywhere we go online. In less than 3 clicks on my phone, I can immediately spread an article I like from twitter to 15-20 immediate viewers. But this isn’t about how amazing social media, its about how clever marketers found a way to re-revolutionize the impact of it all. Marketing breakthroughs have been so frequent the past year that the excitement of it all is usually fleeting. Despite the current lack of shock value of social media, these recent marketing techniques have left me baffled.
1. Justin Bieber “Never Say Never” 3D (Theaters/3D Appeal)
I hate Justin Bieber fantatics. Some lady hates those fanatics too and decided the best way to contain her rage is by stealing their money. In an elaborate, money making scheme, she put together a montage of 3 home videos, 2-3 viral youtube videos, footage of concerts, a couple of 3 sentence interviews, and a collection of the freaks themselves screaming on camera. The collection of clips were put in chronological order, made “3D” and then advertised it as an “Experience to his world in 3D”. What most would consider a documentary, suddenly became an “experience” worth $11-18 in a theater near you.
The only difference between “Never Say Never” and MTV Behind the Scene is a slight 3D effect. It was brilliant. Give loyal fans what they want and they’ll pay for it—a simple act with profound effects.
Never Say Never to teenage freaks.
2. Rebecca Black (Youtube)
The Bieber movement consequently inspired two parents to invest in their bathroom voice prodigy daughter, Rebecca. After $2000+ spent on hiring a professional recording group, youtube recognition, and I’m guessing a whopping $1.59 to some lyricist, Rebecca Black launched a video that received more notoriety than anything else I’ve lived to see.
I will confess, I never made it past the first 30 seconds of the video but I have endured countless renditions and parodies of the music video. The brilliance of the song “Friday” is not the actual video but how Ark Music Factory (the recording agency) specifically caters to wealthy parents with untalented children. I say this because Rebecca Black is not the first of her kind; there are others just as worse. Ark Music Factory provides false hope, a camera, and auto-tune in exchange for a couple grand to aspiring pop stars.
Sign me up.
It must have been frustrating for marketing agencies to see effortless youtube videos gain the attention of millions and media notoriety while their own strategies were reduced to standard commercializing. However, a concession was made when Jennifer Aniston pastiched a medley of previously viral youtube videos for a Smart Water campaign. With over 8 million hits, the self-proclaimed “viral” video did justice to its name.
The whole concept behind bottled water is already scheming, but after gathering direct attention with immediate responses and millions of viewers for FREE, it is now innovative. No, Smart.
4. Charlie Sheen (Radio/Television/Twitter)
I know, this guy is overexposed but I really love it when celebrities capitalize on their mishaps and tragedies. Why wouldn’t you? Postmodernism has taught celebrities one valuable lesson: either you hide and lose the limelight forever OR you accept your faults, gain attention from all media outlets and then you secure your fame by capitalizing on it.
After being exposed for abusing his wife, using an undisclosed amount of drugs, having porn stars as best friends, Charlie Sheen went on a series of rampant interviews at radio stations and talk shows. His attempts at self-defense were minimal and outweighed by hilarious remarks—manifesting irreversible insanity. For a solid 2 days, Charlie Sheen ruled all forms of media. Sheen soon became an active tweeter, helping him unofficially coin terms like #tigerblood and #turd. With all this, Sheen saw fit to launch a series of “shows” around the US. This is a marketing #win.
Tiger Woods, talk to Sheen, you were never as bad as him.