It seems to be the rage these days. Clients want to see something 'interesting', something that 'stands out' and what we hear is 'make us a 30 second viral video'.
Here are some of Ad Age's most recent examples, my favourite being Wieden + Kennedy's 'The Man Your Man Could Smell Like'.
So how do we do it? How, when the client is so specific about what words and images you can and can't use, can you make a video that really entertains and excites people?
But let's get even more basic. Why does it need to be a video? Why can't it be a graphic? A cartoon? A word?
Can you 'make' a viral?
I once asked my mentor about virals, and his response was, “'It's impossible. You can't just 'make' a viral video.” See, here's the thing that a lot of people don't seem to be getting about viral:
You don't make a viral.
A viral makes itself.
A viral doesn't come from a brief. When I see a viral, I don't say, 'Wow, what a perfect execution of an idea!' I usually say 'holy *$^@', because I've never seen anything like it, it engages/excites/interacts with me and then some part of my brain says, 'I should send this to my friends.'
That's what makes it viral. When I see something that not only interests me, but makes me want to send it to someone else, that's when it's viral. The only way something becomes viral is when it's out of a client or even an agency's hands.
Clients have the bug
The idea of viral is a daunting one. It both interests and intimidates clients. They're ecstatic at the idea of their brand being looked at by millions of people in a matter of minutes. But what scares many of them is the idea that they can't control it. They can't decide what markets it will go in and for how long. It also usually involves them going beyond what their comfortable with.
But then again, that's what makes a good client. Good clients want to be pushed beyond their comfort zone. They're willing to engage in open and honest conversations about their brand and don't let the idea of change alarm them.
And that's where Wunderman comes in.