Scraping the Surface

Have you joined the 39,323,434 people who have laughed about bad breath with the Orabrush brand?

I’m a big fan of brands that find powerful ways to tell their story particularly when they entertain me and I walk away motivated to either learn more or buy the product. Clever is wonderful but clever that motivates is powerful. Check out this brilliant video that has closed to 20,000,000 views and on YouTube. I never thought about scraping my tongue so through this marketing effort, I became aware of this topic. 

Distribution is King
We marketers love to talk about content marketing but it is in content distribution that there is power. When an advertiser buys space to tell me a story, I’m skeptical. When it interrupts my TV viewing or magazine article, I get annoyed. I know TV viewership is growing and people watch more TV than ever but don’t confuse that with watching commercials. The DVR has given us the gift of commercial free content not to mention all the options from Netflix, Hulu, Youtube and so forth. 

Marketing like this Orabrush video is brilliant beyond the content because it comes from my friends sharing something funny. This video was sent by a friend whose goal was to make me happy. (I don't think he was telling me to check my breath). But instead of a network delivering an ad to me, it came from someone I know and trust. 

And when enough friends post a clever video or animation to a social media site, you are going to take a peak and watch.

Context Counts
So context really matters and who shares it counts just as much. 

If you go to a dinner party and some stranger corners you about insurance and puts on the hard sell, you know what your reaction would be.

But if your friend introduces you to that same person who shares a story of how he helped save a life that day, you will be all ears. He may have saved a life by helping a family member provide for their well-being with insurance placed in a trust. But you respect your friend enough to at least listen to her connection tell their story. Some marketers think of this as getting under the radar

You have to find a way to get your message heard by being useful and through the benefit of trust.

Recently native advertising is creeping into the marketing lexicon. These are ads created by broadcasters, radio stations, magazines, video games or other channels that create proprietary messaging for that channel. 

Last week, while doing research - er, wasting time on Buzz Feed, I came across this very funny video called Dear Kitten. It perfectly illustrates my point. 

It is very clever and tells a funny story. Since the video involves cats, I’m already a sucker, but this native ad didn’t feel like it was interrupting my time on the site. In fact, I didn't realize it was advertising to me at all until my second viewing. I assumed I was watching a funny video of an older cat giving wise advice to his young kitten friend.

I thought it was just humorous content until the end. Check it out and see what its about. Don’t worry, it’s worthy of 2 minutes and 57 seconds. At least 19,243,231 thought so. 

Envelope Pushing
How can you better market your message by having it passed along and shared? What ways can you push the proverbial envelope so that you are reaching your targeted audience with content that tell the right story when your audience is open to listen. Remember listening and hearing are two different things. A few suggestions: 

Now go scrape your tongue or feed the cat or scrape your cat's tongue. 


Jeffrey Slater

Need a marketing coach? You can reach me through where I can advise and guide you with your marketing efforts. 

Here is a photograph from 1995 of me with Ron Doggett, former CEO of GoodMark Foods and the late Randy Savage, AKA Macho Man. Snapping into it, oh yeah. 

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