By now I'm sure you've all seen the Old Spice commercials featuring Isaiah Mustafa as the "Old Spice Guy," little nuggets of joy where Mustafa takes us on a humorous, 20 second single shot adventure explaining why we should smell like Old Spice (because you're a man, man). He's also on a horse.
The ads have run for the past few months to creative and critical success. The numbers were great and the campaign stands out as one of the more successful commercial endeavors Old Spice has had in recent memory - in part to the innovation of the commercial (how did they do that?) and in part to Mustafa's, er, raw masculinity, which appealed to women, who studies say hold a large amount of purchasing power. Don't believe me? Do a google search for "isaiah+mustafa+sexy" and you'll see that this ad has clearly resonated with both sexes, across different demographics.
So how does a successful ad campaign with a great deal of positive reception both in traditional media and new propel to the next level?
The original youtube videos, the Old Spice Facebook page and Twitter accounts have hundreds of thousands of comments. The team at old spice decided to take to teh internetz and engage in real time communication.
The Old Spice team set up a studio and responded to tweets and comments to @Old Spice in real time. But they didn't respond in text - they created response videos in the style of the Old Spice commercials for an entire three days, and recorded 180 videos.
In "Re:raondy" the Old Spice man responds to a random fan from youtube.
In "Re:@AlyssaMilano," the Old Spice man responds to real life celebrity and prolific tweeter Alyssa Milano.
How did they do it? Says creative director Josh Bagley:
We had a kind of NASA control center about 15 feet away from Isaiah at two different tables. At one table were Josh Millrod, Dean McBeth and Cody Corona, interactive community managers and digital strategists who were going through all the comments and monitoring all web activity. They were selecting the comments to respond to. Baldwin, Eric Kallman, Craig Allen and I sat at another table furiously writing the responses. We would pass our computers back and forth to one another checking one another's work and adding jokes to one another's copy. The four of us took turns directing. In another room was a team of editors cranking out everything we shot. Not to mention the entire production crew of camera, lighting, teleprompter worker person, etc.
At the end of the day, the Old Spice team created 180 personalized videos and reached over10 million viewer impressions at the cost of a set that was already built, talent, and a quick-witted staff.
Interaction is what will be the difference between a campaign that is rockstar and falls flat. With all of the free, easy to use tools available it borders on idiocracy to not use them. It is more important today than it was yesteryear because your audience expects you to interact with them.
How did the Old Spice team end their video shooting spree? With this final word.
Giving your audience a chance to speak is only half the battle. Responding to them and hearing what they want is the other half.