Not So Dumb Viral Campaigns

TV, radio, mobiles, magazines, newspapers, the internet.. There are so many platforms to advertise your product or service these days, with some being around for a while and some being relatively new. But, just because we can advertise on every possible medium, doesn’t mean we should. As mentioned in a previous blog entry, mobile marketing is growing, whereas advertising on the radio may not be the smartest choice for your company. Though, it is not only the platform that is used for your marketing campaign that is important, but there are a whole lot of other contributing factors that will deem your success and whether your campaign will go viral. Today I will show you two viral marketing campaigns that were (and still are) highly successful and tell you why.

Metro Trains Melbourne – Dumb Ways to Die

Let’s start with a something that is close to home. Dumb ways to die is a social marketing campaign by Metro trains trying to remind people to be safe around trains. Boy, did this thing go viral. With over 127 million views on YouTube, people all around the world were intrigued by the humorous and catchy tune. Why was it so successful? Firstly, they created an emotional appeal to the audience. They created cute characters, an extremely catchy tune and highlighted a serious issue in a light, relaxed manner. When people see something this entertaining and creative, they are going to want to show their friends. This case also states that they targeted a global scale audience before the local Australian audience by using North American animals in the video, further stating the video had to go viral first before taking real effect. Secondly, they knew what platforms to use. The internet allowed the video to be viewed and spread very easily, compared to if they just aired it on Australian television. The global success of the campaign continued with the creation of a karaoke version, spoofs, posters, games, books and merchandise stemming from the video.

AAMI – Rhonda & Ketut

Rhonda and Ketut are now Australian icons thanks to this advertisement by AAMI, advertising car insurance. Now there is a whole series of ads for AAMI focusing on their love story, which makes them serious relationship goals. The success of this campaign stems from funny, memorable phrases such as ‘hot like a sunrise’ and relatable characters, like Rhonda, an everyday person who you can’t help but love. According to this article, 46% of consumers found the original commercial enjoyable to watch, with most advertisements only getting 21%. The success stems from the fact that this ad was different to many car insurance ads, it didn’t even involve a car accident at first. The ad had many talking points that could be repeated through social media and word of mouth and to be honest with you, I knew about the ad and what it was about before even seeing the ad myself, which supports the statistic of advertising awareness hitting a record high of 72%.

What are your favourite viral marketing campaigns and why?