Blizzard – “Chuck Norris, Hunter”
Blizzard, creator of the game World of Warcraft (popularly known as WOW), has released several commercials in the past featuring pop-culture icons to promote their game. Mr. T and Chuck Norris are just a couple ironic celebrities used in these ads, but the marketing is effective when looking at the target audience. The internet savvy users of WOW are familiar with memes such as Chuck Norris, which surely helped this commercial go viral. With nearly 700,000 views in just a week it would seem those who celebrate the now several years old “Chuck Norris as an internet icon” phenomenon have not waned in their enthusiasm. The commercial is pretty funny and creates some new “Norrisisms” – my favorite has to be in the description of the ad which goes like this: “Chuck Norris didn’t break a sweat filming the newest World of Warcraft television spot. Instead, he made the director cry and then cooled himself with the tears.” While the game is seven years old, it still has a massive following, however, two weeks ago it was announced that Blizzard lost 800,000 subscribers last quarter and two million subscribers in the last year, which begs the question, is this commercial trying to regain some of that user base?
Fiat – “Seduction”
Italian car maker Fiat has released this very sensual commercial featuring a gorgeous woman and a man with Michael Cera-esque awkwardness. The ad has some pretty steamy interactions with the woman and coffee froth, as well as her provocative posture when we are first introduced to her. She is first upset when she spots the man staring at her but quickly changes her tone and begins to seduce him. Just as he is about to kiss her, he is shot back into reality. The reveal of the woman actually being a car is one of the best twist endings of a commercial in some time. It’s also quite funny and unexpected. The way the woman beckons and teases this guy is how many car enthusiasts feel when they see a nice car on the street. He is drawn in by her elegant form and aggressive nature, specific qualities the car makers wanted to show off of this car. The execution was quite good. With over 260,000 views in just two days this viral has taken off for a variety of reasons, but will likely continue to stay popular for its seductive and humorous tone.
Nescafe – “Hypnotist”
This is proving to be the weekly viral video post that showcases the best production quality internet virals have to offer, while underwhelming us with their poor view counts. Enter this Nescafe ad. It has beautiful cinematography and some excellent special effects which is why one must question its view count of just under 50,000. Granted, the ad doesn’t offer anything inherently viral, but it does suggest some bigger philosophical ideas about how we need to open our eyes and see what’s going on around us. This is shown by the frantic world that the ad begins with juxtaposed against the calm that the hypnotist brings. It can be assumed this hypnotist is an allusion to coffee, which suggests that with the help of Nescafe you too can calm your hectic morning down. Without getting too in depth with commentary revolving around how distracted people are on a daily basis, it’s fair to say this ad helps put life in perspective in some respects. On the other hand, it’s an ad that’s for a coffee brand which suggests that the aforementioned coffee will give its consumer a clarity of mind that will ingest and dissect all that the world has to offer.
State Farm – “Eat, Fry, Love”
William Shatner is brilliant in this over-the-top PSA sponsored by State Farm to help keep us safe during Thanksgiving. Oil fires are violent and fast. One needs only to watch this video attached by State Farm which illustrates the speed at which things can go from calm to catastrophic. So please, heed Mr. Shatner’s warning and use the dingle dangle in conjunction with a thawed turkey and reasonable amount of oil to prevent burning your house down or losing forearm hair. At three minutes long I was hesitant to give this ad a chance, but William Shatner lured me in, and he didn’t disappoint. This ad stayed consistently funny while still managing to be informational. With a very low view count of 15,000 this ad isn’t gaining much notoriety. However, it was released early last week and has potential to gain momentum as we get closer to Thanksgiving and the armchair quarterbacks decide to become masters of the fryer as well. State Farm has a vested interest in making sure homes don’t get burned down from turkey fires this Thanksgiving. As an insurance company it’s in their best interest to try and keep their costs down, so why not release a happy PSA (which is much preferred to the scare tactic commercials that drunk driving ads traditionally use) to promote sharing? This is a wonderful way to get people talking about the subject and this video is perfect to share on Facebook with your friends. Few things could be more horrific than burning your house down during the holidays or severely burning a family member, so stay safe and spread the message.
Nokia – “The Amazing Everyday”
Nokia has released this viral featuring people doing common things in a slightly more exciting way. The ad starts off strong with a bacon and eggs breakfast shaped as skull and crossbones, then goes into some more interesting things, like Einstein etched into the back of a dirty car window. The spot essentially showcases people making the most out of everyday situations that could otherwise be seen as routine or mundane. The tone of this ad encourages people to dance while they do the dishes or to try operating heavy machinery with their feet instead of hands. While the ad doesn’t show much of the phone that this video is selling it suggests the phone will offer its users a different method to do everyday things, like check Facebook or e-mail. While not an exceptionally innovative ad it has still managed to get nearly 400,000 views, quite impressive for a commercial that doesn’t offer the blockbuster quality of last weeks Razr ad. Like all good viral campaigns, this one integrates Facebook with a link out at the end of the commercial inviting users to explore more about the phone.
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