Monday, December 16, 2013

I'll Opt for an Effective Video over a Viral Video

In the wake of WestJet's Christmas Miracle I've had quite a number of conversations surrounding the effectiveness of viral videos. All viral videos evoke some sort of emotion weather its humour, happiness, sympathy etc. but how many of them actually have a strong correlation to use of a product or service?

Obviously getting millions of impressions is going to lead to more conversions and a bigger bottom line. This isn't always the case. Kmart's Ship My Pants was hilarious and garnered 20 million views. Kmart has actually dropped sales by 2.5% over the past two quarters. The reason: Kmart has an awful in store experience. Dark, dingy, poorly stocked shelves. You can have the best video in the world but if all your platforms aren't up to par you're not going to do well.

Turkish Air's Selfie Shootout with Kobe and Messi has 125 million views and counting, but whats the point? The takeaway from this video "Flying to more countries than any other airline". Thats great but you can span those countries across 5 or 6 different airlines and get to the same places. Whats more ridiculous, for a service based industry they don't touch on the experience of flying at all. In an industry that is becoming more and more commoditized with aggregator sites like +Expedia and +Orbitz the best deal wins, so until you start flying somewhere no one else does you don't really have a point of differentiation to stand on.

Now WestJet did a great job with their video and though its too early to tell if it will affect the bottom line it has gotten them considerably positive PR. The goodwill they show to their consumers goes along way to building a positive brand image. It will be interesting to see how WestJet builds on this opportunity to continue building their brand image and transform that into brand equity and loyalty.

Coca-Cola's Happiness Machine is an example of a campaign that was well received and drove sales. +Coca-Cola  impacted consumers positively while they were using the product. They surround the whole experience with positive reinforcements. Though only coming in at a paltry 5 million views its one of the most effective video campaigns in the past 3 years.