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Why the “Old Spice Guy” Campaign Went Viral

Jul 29, 2011

Old Spice is a brand from Proctor & Gamble. You wouldn’t think that a deodorant brand would not be a good candidate for a viral marketing campaign. But, P&G found a way to resonate with a young audience.

In 2010, they began creating ads that featured Isaiah Mustafa, a former NFL wide receiver with washboard abs. Mustafa was originally introduced at a Super Bowl commercial.

After the successful commercial, P&G began an internet viral marketing blitz.

A tactic they chose was responding to individual tweets and comments by creating personal video responses.

One in particular involved talk show host Ellen DeGeneres. She tweeted the following:

image

 

Old Spice responded to Ellen’s tweet with the following YouTube response.

Re: @TheEllenShow | Old Spice

As of July 2011, this video has received almost 1.5 million views on YouTube.

They have created personal videos for other celebrities, such as Demi Moore, Apolo Ohno, Starbucks, and Alyssa Milano.

Isaiah Mustafa also replies to non-celebrities as well. For example, he responds a post made by a fan that wrote "What would happen if you were in a room with a Pirate and a Ninja".

Re: losimagic | Old Spice

He even did a marriage proposal on behalf of one of his fans.

Re: @Jsbeals | Old Spice

Lessons Learned

Respond directly to your fans

If followers of your business know that you will respond to them personally on social media platforms, such as Twitter and Facebook, they will stay fans forever.

 

Also, if someone who is not a fan sees this, they will quickly know that you care about your customers and will become fans of your business.

 

Don’t limit the way you respond to comments about your business. Though Old Spice received the majority of their comments on Twitter, they chose to respond to customers on YouTube. Along with YouTube, you can also respond via email, Skype, or posting a comment on their blog.

Find and engage with the influencers

Although Old Spice did respond to ordinary fans, they made a point to respond to influencers. Celebrities like Ellen DeGeneres and Demi Moore have hundreds of thousands of Twitter followers. When a video response was made by Old Spice, all of Ellen DeGeneres’ and Demi Moore’s followers had access to those videos.

 

For your industry, find the influencers that can help spread your message. For example, if you have a restaurant business, find the top food bloggers, and engage with them personally.

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