Thursday, December 12, 2013

Great ad

This video is an ad. And it’s gone viral. Any advertiser would be happy with that result, but we can overlook all that, I think, and just enjoy it.

I’d never heard of WestJet, a low-cost Canadian airlines, until this video went viral. I’m probably not alone in that, which means that it was marketing money well spent.

But what of the ad itself? Why do we respond to it so strongly? I think some of it is that we imagine how it would feel to have a wish granted. But I think the main thing is that there’s something about normal humans that we like seeing other people being made happy. It helps that the video is so well made, of course, but I think it’s the ordinary people getting special surprises that makes this video so compelling.

Last year, WestJet did another Internet-aware marketing video, a “flash mob” in an airport. But even now, it has less than 10% of the views of this year’s video. Emotion matters, is the main lesson there, I think.

We get bombarded by advertising messages all the time, everywhere. Sometimes, one actually resonates with us, and for many of us, this is that sort of ad.

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