Old Spice: Social Media interaction done right

The explosion of interest in Old Spice this week is a great example of social media interaction done right. It’s also a great example of how to build on and extend a popular video. You may have seen the original “The man your man could smell like” ad (which I believe was shown on American TVs during Superbowl as well as online).

That original ad has been on YouTube since February and has clocked up over 13 million views on YouTube. But in the past two days the campaign has been reignited by a new video campaign in which the video team created &  shot personal responses to Twitter messages – in real time. Read Write Web has a good article on how they’ve pulled these ads together in real time. Very impressive & bold work. Kudos to whoever convinced the Old Spice folks to give so much leeway to the creative people putting together these videos!

They’ve done video responses to a number of Twitter celebrities including Alyssa Milano and Rose McGowan, not to mention Digg founder Kevin Rose and tech blog Gizmodo. In fact, the Old Spice official channel on YouTube now has 302 videos on it!

It’s worth noting that they didn’t just rely on the personalised video spots – they also released a new Old Spice guy video, called Questions, which follows a similar formula to the original video. That video was uploaded to YouTube on June 29 and is at 5 million views so far.

They’ve also taken a leaf from the Barack Obama online campaign, (which allowed people to create their own Barack Obama buttons) and released some video footage for fans to remix.  As the Next Web folks pointed out, Pandarr from news aggregator Reddit asked the Old Spice guy to provide some video footage which could be used to create individual voicemail messages – which he did. The result was the Old Spice guy voicemail message which fans can customise & download to use as their voicemail message.

So what we’ve seen is a brand harness the popularity of a viral video to generate another huge wave of interest and views for their content, by using Twitter feedback and filming personalised, on-demand content. Witty, real time interaction. Finally an online campaign impressive enough to knock the Barack Obama campaign guys off the top of the list for tech conference keynotes. I hope you are listening, Webstock folks. 🙂


  1. Lieu Pham Said,

    July 30, 2010 @ 3:40 am

    Hi Sarah. You might be interested in this post: ‘Twitter Users Aren’t Interested in Supporting Your Brand’ http://bit.ly/9roiLc

  2. admin Said,

    July 30, 2010 @ 3:48 am

    Thanks for the link, I’ve bookmarked it in Delicious too!
    I am not surprised to see that the direct interaction between people and brands on Twitter is low, but to be honest, I think the percentage of brand mentions by people on Twitter is higher than that article suggests. I saw the results of a study last year which said that product mentions and recommendations were a significant proportion of social media content – and that’s certainly my observation of the social media I participate in.


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