Creating a “viral video” is no easy task, but every now and then someone pops one out, let’s examine how.

Let’s take it back to 2013 shall we? I know it was sooooo long ago, who can even remember? I can’t. Not much at least, but ya know what’s one thing that I can definitely remember? Kmart’s commercial. Yeah, I said it. KMART. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, then take a look.

I remember the first time I saw this commercial, I nearly shipped my pants. What’s so great about this commercial? It’s 30 seconds long, so it’s short enough to keep the viewers attention, but not only that, it’s just pure genius. Kmart took a chance and made an ad that might offend a few people because of what the subject matter sounds similar to.

Now, I can’t tell you who played in the SuperBowl in 2013 (I was out of the country at the time though), and I can’t even tell you anything about the SuperBowl commercials of 2014! Yeah, just a few short months ago. I can’t remember any of those commercials that corporations spent millions of dollars on. What does that say?

Another one that I will always remember is that very first Old Spice ad that got everyone all up in a tizzy. Remember how good that was? It made the actor in it famous. He was on Ellen for crying out loud!

old spice ellen video marketing

So why was that one so great? Why can I remember that one nearly 5 years later, but I can’t remember what I had for breakfast on Monday? Well, once again, that video was only 30 seconds long. And they took a risk. They created something new that no one had seen before. I don’t know if you watched how that was made, but it was all shot in one take, that’s hard with all those moving pieces.

What else made the Kmart video and the Old Spice video great? The writing. Kmart forced a pun, (an inappropriate pun) which made everyone laugh. Let’s be honest, we all have the humor of a 10-year-old boy, right? Just me? Okay then. And the Old Spice commercial basically told women that their man was inadequate compared to the Old Spice Man. I mean he’s on a boat and then a horse all within a few seconds, who doesn’t want that man?

So just remember, taking risks can pay off. Make sure you know your audience, or the audience that you’re trying to bring in. Both Kmart and Old Spice were aiming to a younger audience, and it worked. The Old Spice currently sits at around 48 million views, and the Kmart commercial is at around 21 million. And that’s just on their channels alone, not including all the other YouTube users that have uploaded the commercial.

Remember, a clever script, thinking outside of the box, and taking a risk can pay off in the long run.

You want to create a commercial that makes others want to recreate it or parody it. Think about the Van Damme commercial for Volvo. Everyone remember that? Where he stands straddling two Volvo trucks which slowly move apart, causing him to do the splits? Here just watch.

This commercial was recreated so many times that I lost count. Someone made a 3D Chuck Norris doing the same, only on jets. Don’t believe me?

And if that’s not enough, Channing Tatum recreated it on the set of 22 Jump Street. Not only did that commercial bring attention to Volvo, it caused 22 Jump Street to make a parody video and use it as advertising for the movie!

So in conclusion, don’t be boring; don’t we have enough of that already?