Thursday, March 26, 2009

Viral Agencies Are The New Ad Agencies

Does this great ad for Samsung LED TVs from the Viral Factory herald a new dawn in agency land. Essentially what they do is broadcast communicatiuons that connect with people so much so that they pass it on. These ads are based on good solid insight, great creative ideas, they are seeded cleverly, optimised and then they measure the hell out of them. 

I was at an event afew years ago when an old ad man pointed out that digitalads were rubbish because people don't stand around the water cooler talking about them.  They are now, and the watercooler is called facebook.

Though it is not necessarily about the numbers over 4.5 Million people have seen the sheep with over 13,000 votes, averaging 5 stars.

For them viral is not a noun it is an adjective.

As I suggetsed afew years ago, ad agencies had one last opportunity to hit the ball out of the park by recognising the potential of online video. Afew have recognised this new world, most are still treating it as abit of fun on the side. 

The majority of the views of the Drumming Gorilla were online. Dove Evolution was an online ad that then went on to TV. Which one was the TV ad, which one was the viral? They are not just good ads. They are good virals.

Successes are few and far between. Viral companies seem to have a better hit rate.


matthias.lindenberger said...

As to the higher hit rate: maybe because the evolutionary pressure is higher, due to direct visibility of performance indicators?

Giles Rhys Jones said...

great point - advertising darwinism.

Anonymous said...

It's important to recognize the power of online video, but ...

for all the success stories you mentioned there are hundreds of online campaigns that went unnoticed. Just like ... traditional advertising.

It's not black or white, but rather several shades of gray.

Andy Robinson said...


I really like your point "for them viral is a noun, not an adjective".

It reminds me of a piece I wrote on my blog about how brands need to develop content strategies rather than channel strategies. There's too much of a focus on "doing a viral", rather than on developing excellent content that is inherently sticky and viral that can work across the business.

You can read more here: