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  • Jan

    Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably heard Rebecca Black’s song “Friday.” You’ve also probably heard lots of people bash the heck out of it. As Internet marketers, we should be so lucky. This article explains, backed up with a few facts.

    Let’s start with YouTube. If you head on over there and look up the official video that was initially uploaded, you’ll find that to date it has well over 45 million views. About a quarter million people gave it a thumbs up while almost one million people gave it a thumbs down. I should be so lucky to even get one million people to watch one of my videos, let alone pan it.

    Oh but it gets better. One parody of the video is currently up to 18 million views and climbing. Oddly, it has more likes than dislikes. There is something about that, that just scares the heck out of me. But I digress.

    And if you go through YouTube, you will find dozens more parodies that are all in the millions of views. It almost seems like all you have to do is create a Friday parody and you’re an instant star. How’s that for easy success?

    Simon Cowell, who pretty much hates everything, praised her saying that anybody who can create that much controversy inside of a week is someone he wants to meet.

    And while the song itself is painfully “bad” it’s also painfully obvious that this was no accident. Let’s face it folks. The world loves bad. The 50s classic “Plan 9 From Outer Space” is said to be the worst movie of all time. Would you like to know how many people have either rented it or bought it just to get a good laugh?

    I should have THAT kind of success.

    Okay Wags, there’s a marketing lesson in here somewhere so can you please get to it?

    Nothing spells death for an Internet marketing campaign more than dullness. It is worse to be totally ignored than for people to look at what you’ve done and say, “Oh my God … how can he even consider doing such a stupid thing?”

    I vividly remember “The Rich Jerk” from back in the early part of the 21st century. I remember reading that very first sales page how he flat out proclaimed “I’m better than you” and went on to ask the reader how long they wanted to go on “being a loser.” It was controversial to say the least. Nobody had ever done anything like this before. And believe me, he spawned imitators though they never really caught on like he did. Lawn Chair Millionaire comes to mind.

    Controversy sells. Sometimes even poor taste sells. Now I’m not advocating going out and creating the worst ad campaign that you can possibly think of, especially if it doesn’t fit your company persona. But there is room for some innovation. Look at the JG Wentworth “Need Cash Now” commercials. They’re pretty corny, wouldn’t you say? But people love ‘em. Hell, I love ‘em. The JG Wentworth Opera Commercial has over a half million views on YouTube right now.

    Half million views for a commercial.One commenter wrote “You know your marketing is good when people search for it on YouTube.”

    Damn straight.

    Nothing puts prospects to sleep quicker than the same old hum drum stuff. I see so much of it everyday that I wonder if ANY of these people are making any money.

    Okay, but if you’re going to get creative, you can’t just throw stuff together. If you think Rebecca Black’s video was just thrown together, think again. A lot of thought went into making it. The auto tune feature was purposely done that way in order to spoof pop music and it did an excellent job of it. In fact, one could argue that the original video itself was a parody of pop music today.

    And why not? Have you LISTENED to some of the garbage on the radio today that artists are trying to pass off as legitimate art? In some ways, “Friday” is more legitimate than a lot of the stuff I currently hear on Z-100, which just happens to be the #1 top 40 station in my area today. I rarely put it on because the sound coming from my speakers is just too awful to stand.

    But the masses eat it up. Heck, even though supposedly nobody buys vinyl records anymore, in 2011, vinyl sales were close to 4 million. What I’d like to know is where people are finding all these record players. And a lot of new music is being put on vinyl because of the resurgence in popularity. I won’t even get into the hundreds of millions in sales in general in this industry yearly. Heck, ITunes is making a killing in case you haven’t noticed.

    But where does all this leave today’s Internet marketer? The answer is quite simple. Technology has made it so that it’s very easy to come up with an ad campaign that blows away anything that was done by professional ad makers back in the 70s and 80s. We can make things now that could only be dreamed about years ago. And we can do it all from our living room. But the technology alone isn’t going to do it for us.

    We need to start thinking outside the box. We need to go back to the days when we were young and weren’t so self conscious. Remember how we would think of the stupidest games and ideas and didn’t care? The dumber something was, the better. And oddly, our friends would say, “Hey, that’s cool. Let’s do it.” Of course that was until we got older and more sophisticated. Then all creativity went out the window. Heaven forbid we did anything to embarrass ourselves.

    Well, unless we go back to THAT kind of thinking and not be afraid to put it all out there and be different, our marketing is going to stagnate and die. People will start to tune us out because we’ve become boring and stale. The end result? Our sales die.

    Rebecca Black got a lot of criticism. And while she herself didn’t make a lot of money from the video, she generated a lot of revenue for somebody.

    Today is Thursday. Tomorrow is Friday.

    Do something about it … before IT does something about YOU.

    To YOUR Success,

    Steven Wagenheim

    If you want more straight talk about marketing and learn more than from all those high priced e-books at NO cost, subscribe to my New World Order Newsletter and get the education of a lifetime.

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