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Happy 15th Birthday YouTube – Here are your highlights…

This month, YouTube is fifteen years old. As a member of the Generation Z clan, I find that hard to process.

As we know, YouTube has provided a cemented platform for cute cats and wannabe Evel Knievels hysterically falling from small walls, but it had a more-than-profound effect on the marketing and public relations world.

TV adverts were something we used to skip to go make a cup of tea, or a window of time in which to relieve your bladder. But, since its launch in 2005, YouTube has provided the platform for some incredible advertising communications that exceed what was we thought was virally possible.

Here are some of the best viral YouTube-based marketing campaigns we have seen:

1. Dollar Shave Club

Razor subscription service Dollar Shave Club is a very interesting brand. It was almost solely built up through influencer marketing through brand deals with YouTubers and has gone on to secure almost 3.2 million subscribers to its service worldwide.

In 2012, they launched one of their first promotional videos on YouTube, racking up a total of nearly 27 million views so far. The video is incredibly satirical, clever and downright hilarious!

2. Always’ #LikeAGirl

An incredibly powerful and eye-opening campaign, Always’ 2014 ‘#LikeAGirl’ campaign was an early adopter of including a hashtag in a title to help spread a communication. With nearly 69 million views, the campaign is supportive and uplifting and is perfectly summarised by the first line in its description:

“Join Always in our epic battle to keep girls’ confidence high during puberty and beyond. Using #LikeAGirl as an insult is a hard knock against any adolescent girl.”


3. Gillette’s ‘The Best a Man Can Be’

Another campaign that questioned gender expectations and stereotypes was Gillette’s 2019 campaign, swapping their iconic tagline ‘The Best a Man Can Get’ for ‘The Best a Man Can Be’ to promote the end of toxic masculinity.

It was an incredibly powerful piece and despite the quite strong backlash it received (shown by the hugely disproportionate amount of dislikes on the video), Gillette’s campaign fulfilled its sole purpose – to make the world stop and think.

4. GoPro’s ‘Fireman Saves a Kitten’

A great example of let ‘the product do the talking.’ Video camera market leaders GoPro, uploaded footage of an unconscious kitten being rescued from a burning house by a firefighter. All shot on a Hero camera, the harrowing and intense clip was shared worldwide and viewed 43 million times.

All GoPro had to do was stick their brand logo at the start of the footage and the advertisement was complete. Buzzwords like durable, reliable, sturdy and dependable all spring to mind without ever being said.

5. John Lewis Christmas Adverts

One of the most famous Christmas adverts is actually one of the best viral video examples of last year. When someone says ‘have you seen the John Lewis Christmas advert’, you don’t immediately sit in front of the TV and wait attentively until it comes around, you grab YouTube and it’s there on the homepage. The most viewed article across most of the big newspaper sites last Christmas was the John Lewis advert.

Spanning both traditional and new advertising platforms with a successful campaign? John Lewis completed it mate.



What 2016 taught us in the world of video content…by Rose Dooley

A New Year, a new start. 2017 has arrived and we’re already marching through the month with the force of a January gale force wind.

But, as we focus on the new and exciting prospects that 2017 may hold, it’s important to look back and take inspiration from what we have learnt from the last year, especially in the world of video content.

Here are some thoughts from our video department, Rich Reels…

Learn to Evolve

Whilst we’re are always on the lookout for new and forward thinking ways of creating video content, that doesn’t always mean out with the old and in with the new. Search engine giant Google has taught us the art of evolution, especially when it comes to its trademark ideas. Through the power of Google Maps, every Christmas Eve for the past 12 years, a whole generation of families have been able to track Santa as he makes his way around the globe. With virtual reality becoming a reality for video content, Google has embraced new technology and trends so that trackers can watch and interact with Santa’s very own dashboard camera from the front of his sleigh, allowing viewers an additional perspective to his progress around the world.

Be part of the action

Another popular trend of the past twelve months is the 360-video experience. A dream for travel marketing and a great way for charities to emotionally connect with their audience, 360-video allows consumers the chance to see a video from their own individual point of view, truly immersing themselves in the action. Check out one of our favourites from the Go Pro Bombsquad. The ‘Blue Skies’ video allows viewers to skydive, for three minutes and thirty seconds, from several thousand feet, all from the comfort of your screen.

Never under estimate the power of social media

Anyone heard of a family fun game called Pie Face? Was it from the clever video ads and digital marketing? Or was it your Facebook and Snapchat feeds full of your friends playing the game? In this instance, Hasbro and Rocket Games let the product do the talking on social media. A YouTube video from May 2016 of a grandfather and grandson playing the game went viral and led to the product selling out. By the end of 2016, back in stock, Pie Face had taken pride of place alongside Scrabble and Kerplunk alike in retailers. With kids, parents and even animals getting involved in the fun and sharing online.