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Swan dive! Into interactive TV commercials.
July 13, 2010 1:58 PM   Subscribe

Digg co-founder and CEO Kevin Rose has been sick with left lower lobe pneumonia since July 4. Today he received a get-well message from an unlikely person: the Old Spice Man.

The deodorant company's marketing campaigns have been discussed before on MetaFilter, but this time it's personal. The Old Spice Man (a.k.a. Isaiah Mustafa) joined Reddit and created an Ask Me Anything thread. He is also rapidly sending personal video responses to dozens of strangers about such topics as babies repairing pocketwatches, machine gun/butter knives, and sharks playing poker.
posted by The Winsome Parker Lewis (147 comments total) 27 users marked this as a favorite

 
Man, Wieden are good at this shit. I don't like 'em, but I have to admire them. I mean, they got you to post it here.
posted by dersins at 2:02 PM on July 13, 2010 [4 favorites]


Great, thanks for the update on this important viral marketing effort.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 2:04 PM on July 13, 2010 [16 favorites]


Oh, Kevin should feel ripped off. His bathroom didn't even come apart or anything. Great marketing idea though.
posted by crunchland at 2:05 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


[see also, re: Wieden's marketing to the internets]
posted by dersins at 2:05 PM on July 13, 2010


But wait, he's on reddit too! Doesn't he understand that there's a war going on?
posted by 2bucksplus at 2:06 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


So there exists ...a place where I can request things Isaiah Mstafa can do in videos?

I think I need to ...sit down.
posted by The Whelk at 2:10 PM on July 13, 2010 [39 favorites]


If I love these commercials but already use Old Spice, does that mean I've succumbed to the viral campaign? Or can I lord over people that I used Old Spice "back before it was cool?"
posted by SNWidget at 2:12 PM on July 13, 2010 [2 favorites]


I love these commercials but I still don't use Old Spice.
posted by kmz at 2:13 PM on July 13, 2010 [3 favorites]


Yep, it's just a bunch of ads, totally unimportant in the grand scheme of things. But honestly, I just can't bring myself to hate ads that go out of their way to have as much fun as possible with random people online. I mean, they're honest that they're advertising something, but at the same time they're giving enjoyment to a bunch of strangers. It's cool if it's not your thing though; you don't have to like it if you don't want to.
posted by The Winsome Parker Lewis at 2:13 PM on July 13, 2010 [17 favorites]


I love Wieden + Kennedy so much. That is all.
posted by Rory Marinich at 2:14 PM on July 13, 2010 [2 favorites]


All communication is ads. The only difference is what's being advertised. For example, this message is meant to convince you how clever I am. It provides a distinct mating advantage.
posted by Naberius at 2:17 PM on July 13, 2010 [14 favorites]


Also? Ha!
posted by kmz at 2:17 PM on July 13, 2010


Wow. I'd stopped watching Diggnation a few weeks ago, and had no idea Kevin Rose was even sick. I hope he recovers soon. He's one of those odd internet personalities that I've followed over the years.
posted by hippybear at 2:17 PM on July 13, 2010


All communication is ads. The only difference is what's being advertised.

Piffle.
posted by DU at 2:21 PM on July 13, 2010 [3 favorites]


This man needs to be President of the United States. Not even joking about this.
posted by dhammond at 2:22 PM on July 13, 2010


The "horsehiding" video is genius.
posted by amarynth at 2:24 PM on July 13, 2010 [4 favorites]


...or throw them all into volcanos?



heh
posted by The Whelk at 2:26 PM on July 13, 2010


Kevin Rose - do not like, but the ad has some lulz factor to it. I wonder what the actor's reaction was when he saw the script. "Kevin who's got the what with the WHY?"
posted by pyrex at 2:27 PM on July 13, 2010


Someone with pneumonia really should be kept away from Old Spice!
posted by Carol Anne at 2:27 PM on July 13, 2010


Remember when we'd see hypertargeting in movies (like Minority Report?) and we roll eyes thinking "who'd ever fall for that kind of garbage?".
posted by boo_radley at 2:28 PM on July 13, 2010 [2 favorites]


I boughted Old Spice deodorant last time, specifically because I wanted to encourage more funny ads and I figured that it's all pretty much the same shit anyway.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 2:31 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


I love watching him make such a valiant effort not to laugh
posted by Danila at 2:31 PM on July 13, 2010


All communication is ads. The only difference is what's being advertised. For example, this message is meant to convince you how clever I am. It provides a distinct mating advantage.

Yeah, but here's the difference: You came out and admitted what your message is about. Old Spice is pretending to give a crap about Kevin Rose's health, but is really saying "you, the person watching this ad, please buy some of our body wash."
posted by dirigibleman at 2:34 PM on July 13, 2010


Advertising: We're going to make you love it. That's right… yeah… just like that you dirty consumer whore.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 2:45 PM on July 13, 2010 [4 favorites]


OK. Maybe I'm missing something.

This looks automated to me - his lips aren't matching up, and there are strange instances of "dead air" at the end of some of them (like the script that was written wasn't long enough).

How is this done?
posted by dforemsky at 2:45 PM on July 13, 2010


They are being pretty clear that it's an advertising campaign for Old Spice. I think they are pretty funny. Monacle Smile will be a meme for a while.

Old Spice is pretending to give a crap about Kevin Rose's health.

Maybe someone at the Portland-based advertising agency does? I mean, they are specifically targeting reddit and digg with the campaign as far as I can tell.
posted by cj_ at 2:47 PM on July 13, 2010


I like that they were too lazy to get an actual bathroom set, and instead just stuck the guy in front of a blue screen stuck some bathroom clipart behind him.
posted by delmoi at 2:48 PM on July 13, 2010


Now I want Tim and Eric and the Pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-POWER guy to do the same thing.
posted by qvantamon at 2:48 PM on July 13, 2010


How is this done?

The viral marketing team at the ad agency gets approval to spend $10k marketing it to us, you go to your already built bathroom set in a soundstage, hire your actor, give him some lines, shoot it in HD and upload it to the interweb where we all click it, justifying everyone involved's existence.

Really though, it'd be way more expensive to fake this than shoot it.
posted by nathancaswell at 2:50 PM on July 13, 2010 [4 favorites]


This looks automated to me - his lips aren't matching up, and there are strange instances of "dead air" at the end of some of them (like the script that was written wasn't long enough).

He posted a photo by request in the reddit thread (so either he's on the set, or he just walks around in a towel all the time). Also, he wears an eyepatch on the Ninja + Pirate question. I think it's legit.
posted by qvantamon at 2:50 PM on July 13, 2010


He has also invaded Reddit.

He is very obviously on the clock, and in character.

I don't know that this is really viral marketing, Old Spice are just sending a paid spokesperson to interact with influential internet blogs. People love to brush with fame, this is really pure genius. No-one wants to be tricked that something is real, and then find out it is a sham. Everyone wants to have a cool "the guy on the horse answered my question" story to tell at the next family reunion.

I mean, he is on the front page of Reddit, Digg and here.

As to the message being insincere, why does that matter? If I got that video and I were sick, it would make my day, no doubt. I wouldn't care if he were on the clock and in character, it is just a nice thing to do.
posted by Antidisestablishmentarianist at 2:50 PM on July 13, 2010 [7 favorites]


Yeah, or shoot him on green and comp it in.
posted by nathancaswell at 2:51 PM on July 13, 2010


He's in Portland right now, and wants to hang out with cortex and mathowie. Or at least that's my interpretation of his call for PDX activities.
posted by mwhybark at 2:52 PM on July 13, 2010 [3 favorites]


I use odor free antiperspirant. Turns out it really is odorless! I was impressed.
posted by delmoi at 2:52 PM on July 13, 2010


The Old Spice must flow!

While I find the new Old Spice man significantly more compelling than past ones, I'm not going to fall for it. The last time I wore Old Spice, I also liberally splashed my head and neck with Ralph Lauren's Polo. You know, back in the 80s. No why the fuck would I want to time travel back to the 80s and smell like that again?
posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 2:52 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


I hurriedly misread the post originally and thought the Old Spice Guy had asked an AskMeta question and wondered how I had missed that shit. Truth was a bit disappointing.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 2:53 PM on July 13, 2010


His response to Anonymous.
posted by cj_ at 2:53 PM on July 13, 2010 [5 favorites]


they are specifically targeting reddit and digg with the campaign

Let's see... and the target demographic for their product is 18-34 yo males...

Frankly, I'm surprised they haven't targeted Metafilter yet.
posted by crunchland at 2:54 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


BTW about 80% of a commercial campaign's budget is MEDIA BUYS, not in production. That's where the serious money is. This means if you've got $1 million to spend adverting a product you don't make a badass $1m commercial. You spend $200k on the commercial because it's more important to drop the other $800k on media buys. That's how it's done. So, knowing that, is it any wonder they would approve something like this for viral marketing? You can easily spend 10k on the shoot but since your target audience is actively finding it themselves you come out WAY AHEAD than if you'd spent a ton of money airing it on TV and hoping metafilter nerds like us just happened to be watching the right channel at the right time.
posted by nathancaswell at 2:55 PM on July 13, 2010 [3 favorites]


RE: NPR's Linda Holmes
posted by birdherder at 2:55 PM on July 13, 2010


People really don't read the "more inside" bits, do they?
posted by kmz at 2:56 PM on July 13, 2010


dirigibleman: "Yeah, but here's the difference: You came out and admitted what your message is about. Old Spice is pretending to give a crap about Kevin Rose's health, but is really saying "you, the person watching this ad, please buy some of our body wash."

I recently read Seth Godin's book All Marketers Are Liars. I believe he'd describe this as a fib: "A fib is a lie that people are glad they believed, even (especially) once they discover the truth. A fraud is a lie that rips people off or takes when it should give." Which is to say our enjoyment from watching the comedy in the clip overcomes the fact that it's an ad and not exactly a get well message to Kevin, and, at the end of the day, Old Spice deodorant is a quality product that performs as advertised.

And, as cj mentioned, they are pretty up front about it being and ad and maybe someone on the ad team actually watches Diggnation and cares about Kevin's health.
posted by sharkfu at 2:56 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


Yeah, but here's the difference: You came out and admitted what your message is about. Old Spice is pretending to give a crap about Kevin Rose's health, but is really saying "you, the person watching this ad, please buy some of our body wash."

There are plenty of people who pretend to give a crap about Kevin Rose's health, and most of them are less interesting than this. Anyone who doesn't know him in real life but tweets "get better" or whatnot (not knocking you, hippybear). Kevin is one of the many (Internet) Celebrities people flock around but know nothing about. While these vague ads that keep the Old Spice Guy on a Horse meme in our heads, they're also as authentic as internet well-wishers, and more interesting. I applaud the interesting.
posted by filthy light thief at 3:01 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


Great, thanks for the update on this important viral marketing effort.

When he posts a video directed at you I have a feeling you're going to squeal like a schoolgirl, stupidsexyFlanders.
posted by GuyZero at 3:02 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


I boughted Old Spice deodorant last time, specifically because I wanted to encourage more funny ads

I've been using it for years and will continue to do so for pretty much the same reason. My only complaint is that the original scent stuff is fine, but you have to keep your eyes open when buying it or you might get one of the newer scents which rival AXE in overpowering vileness.
posted by quin at 3:06 PM on July 13, 2010 [2 favorites]


filthy light thief: I don't feel knocked. But after watching Diggnation for nearly 3 years, I do feel like I know a bit about Kevin and his life. I don't fall prey to the illusion that he's my friend or anything like that, but I have spent a good portion of quite a while with an hour-long visit from him every week. I certainly watched him get tattoos, and cut his hair, and explore China, and opinionate on any number of topics. But yes, I don't really KNOW him, not at all.

I do hope he recovers soon.
posted by hippybear at 3:07 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


He's in Portland right now, and wants to hang out with cortex and mathowie. Or at least that's my interpretation of his call for PDX activities.

Someone with the tweeterspacebook thing needs to invite him to MeFi XI, then.

Or maybe I should invite him to my wedding.
posted by dersins at 3:20 PM on July 13, 2010


Monocle smile!
posted by homunculus at 3:25 PM on July 13, 2010 [2 favorites]


LOL, the ones between him and Alyssa Milano are great.
posted by NoraCharles at 3:31 PM on July 13, 2010


What's wrong with you people? This shit is *funny*
posted by digitalprimate at 3:40 PM on July 13, 2010 [3 favorites]


Too funny.
posted by cazoo at 3:57 PM on July 13, 2010 [3 favorites]


Old Spice isn't the first brand to use Twitter, YouTube or the Power of the Internet for its own gains, but there's something fun and kicky about the idea that Isaiah Mstafa is getting paid today to stand shirtless reciting scripts to random subscribers while holding random props. It's not quite improv but it's damn entertaining.

If a "normal" did this successfully, they could probably get into SXSW or ROFLcon.
posted by zix at 4:00 PM on July 13, 2010


I am shamed to admit that earlier today I watched all 50 of the clips on the Youtube channel. I want to be in his book of successful people that are winning at life.
posted by stoneweaver at 4:03 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


Oh Lord. I just noticed that 64 videos have been added since I last got sucked in. This does not bode well for my productivity this evening.
posted by stoneweaver at 4:04 PM on July 13, 2010 [2 favorites]


I saw this commercial for the first time last week at a party for a friend whose daughter was on Kids Jeopardy. I can't remember the last time-- if ever-- I've seen a bunch of women insist that the commercial be replayed three times before moving on with the rest of the show. That's what you call an advertising campaign.
posted by jokeefe at 4:05 PM on July 13, 2010


"...I'm on a horse! Now look at your regularly scheduled program. Now back to me, the man your man could smell like. The horse is now dead. I'm beating it. And I smell fantastic."
posted by wabbittwax at 4:16 PM on July 13, 2010 [6 favorites]


Kevin tweeted this after seeing the video:

kevinrose: HOLY SH*T, best get well video EVER from the old spice man!: http://bit.ly/dpSeOs
about 4 hours ago via Tweetie for Mac

And Old Spice Man responded.
posted by sharkfu at 4:17 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


I prefer the terry crews commercials.
posted by dead cousin ted at 4:23 PM on July 13, 2010


Old Spice are just sending a paid spokesperson to interact with influential internet blogs.

Then why isn't he (or Bruce Campbell) answering askmes RIGHT THE FUCK NOW? WWWWHHHHHHYYYYYYY?

I would also gladly accept Terry Crews, but only as President Camacho. No offense intended, Mr. Crews.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 4:28 PM on July 13, 2010


By far, this is the best ad campaign I've seen in years. I'm still laughing.
posted by ryoshu at 4:46 PM on July 13, 2010


Wow. The Social Media marketers for Old Spice really kicked out the jams today and hit everywhere at once. Shock and Eww.
posted by vectr at 4:46 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


I really want to know which agency is behind this, who's their social marketing guru and who the hell wrote the copy on the fly like that.
posted by digitalprimate at 4:47 PM on July 13, 2010


digitalprimate - the agency is linked in the first comment on this post. I agree. They are made of brilliant things.
posted by stoneweaver at 4:54 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


You know, I am hopelessly biased in this discussion because they sent me one, but ... no, never mind. The way he says "Linda" makes commenting superfluous.

I have to second the notion that you can make fun of it all you want, and yes, it's just marketing. But it's a neat trick to write this many short scripts in one day and have so many of them be funny.
posted by Linda_Holmes at 4:54 PM on July 13, 2010 [15 favorites]


Yes. Yes, this is all part of a larger ad campaign.

And yet, I do not give one glorious god-damn because even so, this is sheer 280-proof freeze-dried concentrated distilled gold-plated awesome.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 4:55 PM on July 13, 2010


Am I naive to believe that Old Spice commercials are going to save the economy?
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 4:57 PM on July 13, 2010


Ok, some of that was pretty damn funny.
posted by wierdo at 5:03 PM on July 13, 2010


Wait a minute... wait a minute. The Colbert Report is on hiatus this week. I would bet chalk to chutney that improv-master Stephen Colbert has been cranking out every one of these responses.
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 5:08 PM on July 13, 2010


@ East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 That is entirely possible!
posted by digitalprimate at 5:22 PM on July 13, 2010


"Buy Old Spice. Rub It On your Body!"

heh
posted by The Whelk at 5:27 PM on July 13, 2010


I would bet chalk to chutney that improv-master Stephen Colbert has been cranking out every one of these responses.

I can't tell whether you're being facetious, but although that's theoretically possible, it's highly, highly unlikely. Wieden (and other agencies) have a large staff of people whose job it is to write advertising copy. Many of them are extremely smart, funny, and talented (also, many of them are douchey, but that's a whole other thing), and they all know how to write clever scripts that-- most importantly of all-- are faithful to the branding and image of the product. It is significantly more likely that these are written by their large staff of advertising copywriters and creative directors than by $FAMOUSCOMEDIAN.
posted by dersins at 5:35 PM on July 13, 2010


Also the history of the bit indicates Isaiah came up with the character of the Old Spice Man himself, so he could just be going off on tangents based on the e-mails, helped by a team of copywriters and creative directors, which is, IMHO how these things should go.
posted by The Whelk at 5:41 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


These ads malfunctioned on me; I use store-brand Old Spice knockoffs.
posted by uncleozzy at 5:49 PM on July 13, 2010


That's IT! I've had it with these sandwich faced advertising people! This is the last freakin' straw of hay! And I'll never wear deodorant again!
posted by pwally at 6:06 PM on July 13, 2010


Sigh, Isiah is just too hot to be alive. I just hope someone doesn't get the bright idea to put Old Spice Man into a sitcom. That went ever so well with those Geico cave men...
posted by fuse theorem at 6:11 PM on July 13, 2010


I'd rather watch these ads than anything on hulu or conventional TV at the moment.
posted by christhelongtimelurker at 6:13 PM on July 13, 2010


I'd rather watch these ads than anything on hulu or conventional TV at the moment.

Seriously! My cable just went out due to a thunderstorm, but I've watched seven of these videos already and don't miss tv at all! I think this one is my favorite so far.
posted by leesh at 6:28 PM on July 13, 2010


Someone should comp Isaiah Mstafa a metafilter account. 3 comments, a SLYT FPP, and bannage!
posted by cjorgensen at 6:35 PM on July 13, 2010


This is fucking awesome. Old Spice's marketing is hype.
posted by chunking express at 6:41 PM on July 13, 2010


He's in Portland right now, and wants to hang out with cortex and mathowie. Or at least that's my interpretation of his call for PDX activities.

I got to tell him where the comic shop near his hotel is! He actually replied back, too; I was tickled. Seems like a nice guy.
posted by fairytale of los angeles at 7:28 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


For which I am very very sorry

Can I have a program that reads me e-mail in this voice? Is there an app for that?
posted by The Whelk at 8:12 PM on July 13, 2010 [2 favorites]


I don't have any Old Spice, so I rubbed Old Bay on myself. Now I'm being chased by Marylanders with lemons and claw crackers. Please help.
posted by jonmc at 8:12 PM on July 13, 2010 [9 favorites]


I love watching him make such a valiant effort not to laugh

He did laugh.
posted by homunculus at 8:16 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


If more advertising were like this I wouldn't mind advertising so much.
posted by Evilspork at 8:25 PM on July 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


Hah, he said mascularity. I wonder if that was intentional. Either way, amusing.
posted by wierdo at 9:06 PM on July 13, 2010


I had no idea there was a new Old Spice man and thought they'd gotten the guy surfing in this awesome ad out of retirement to shill once more. Now that would have been cool.
posted by zeoslap at 9:18 PM on July 13, 2010


I don't know that this is really viral marketing, Old Spice are just sending a paid spokesperson to interact with influential internet blogs. People love to brush with fame, this is really pure genius.

Bingo! Ad and PR agencies never really do outreach to blogs well.

Nice to see someone being creative.
posted by zarq at 9:18 PM on July 13, 2010


I was commenting on this earlier; for the cost of a couple of quick and witty writers, Mustafa, a camera, some props, and someone to cut and upload, they've put together a cheap ass ad campaign that people will be talking about for years.

As marketing goes, this is nothing short of brilliant.

Hell, as performance art goes it's even pretty good.
posted by quin at 9:29 PM on July 13, 2010 [2 favorites]


Well, I'm coming close to finally forgiving W&K for the Super Bowl debacle.
posted by redsparkler at 9:42 PM on July 13, 2010


guy proposed via Old Spice man.
posted by k8t at 10:36 PM on July 13, 2010


This is seriously good stuff - 'famous' work like Subservient Chicken (which is still live) that will be referred to and talked about for years. He ended up doing about 110 videos in 8 hours, by my reckoning.
posted by DanCall at 2:14 AM on July 14, 2010


As far as "talked about for years, " I can tell you "bald eagle milk" is quite clearly going to hang around NPR for a while.
posted by Linda_Holmes at 3:08 AM on July 14, 2010


That proposal video was great. There are so many good videos here. It's impressive they managed to write so many, and they were all pretty entertaining. Hearing him say peoples twitter or youtube names is funny in and of itself, I suppose.
posted by chunking express at 6:19 AM on July 14, 2010


The bathroom set is real, it turns out.
posted by The Winsome Parker Lewis at 7:45 AM on July 14, 2010


...also, Old Spice Man is back for Round 2, beginning promptly at 8am PST. How long will it continue?
posted by The Winsome Parker Lewis at 8:17 AM on July 14, 2010


It'll keep going so long as people draw attention to it on message boards. It's a vicious circle of spam.
posted by crunchland at 8:41 AM on July 14, 2010


Then we must never stop talking about this. Ever.
posted by chunking express at 8:43 AM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


It occurs to me that it's a good thing the TSA has apparently stopped confiscating liquids from people at airports. I can't imagine the consequences of trying to separate Mr. Mustafa from his Old Spice.
posted by homunculus at 9:21 AM on July 14, 2010



People really don't read the "more inside" bits, do they?


Alas, anything requiring YouTube is impossible for me to see at work. Makes things like this somewhat difficult to follow.
posted by RikiTikiTavi at 9:33 AM on July 14, 2010


...The above is one of the reasons I have an iPhone, though. :)

I wanted to add that "10010110100001101", while conveniently being 16 bits long, doesn't seem to mean anything. Just in case you were as curious as I.
posted by RikiTikiTavi at 9:45 AM on July 14, 2010


I kind of like the ads, they're certainly clever. But they've complicated my life: I already use this stuff, the Old Spice soap. It's pretty good soap. But now when I go to the store, people think I'm buying it because of the ads. I don't want to be that guy. So do I stop using it because I don't want to be that guy. Or does doing that make me that guy.
posted by Who_Am_I at 10:22 AM on July 14, 2010


So do I stop using it because I don't want to be that guy.

If you're going to stop owning, using or consuming things because they're advertised I hope you're prepared to not have: a car; any cleaning or personal hygiene products; most medications; any packaged food of any kind; any beer;insurance; a bank account; airline tickets; a computer or other electronic device; condoms; clothing or shoes made by any national brand; &c. &c. &c.
posted by dersins at 10:46 AM on July 14, 2010


aand thinking about how other people might interpret your deodorant choices means they've already infected your brain.

that was actually the episode that got me to stop listening to TAL for a while <>
posted by The Whelk at 11:18 AM on July 14, 2010


Some pals got him to talk about libraries. I wonder if I could get him to pronounce my name right and talk about the digital divide?
posted by jessamyn at 12:03 PM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


Mystery is mysterious: that's why they called it that.
posted by chunking express at 12:47 PM on July 14, 2010


I think it's pretty great that somebody on Reddit asked him for a voicemail greeting, and he provided the audio building blocks to make a personal one.
posted by The Winsome Parker Lewis at 12:49 PM on July 14, 2010


I buy old spice antiperspirant because its sweet, sweet smell is advertising enough. Thankfully they sell antiperspirant now. For the longest time, they didn't, so I couldn't use old spice, since my choices in life are "wear antiperspirant" or "drown in pit sweat." :(

So yeah, I'm not changing my habits just because the folks at old spice finally decided that some actual marketing might sell more stuff.

Oddly, I actually have old spice body wash at the moment. It was a particularly bad day for good body wash fragrance choices at my supermarket, and it was on sale for super cheap, as it had just been introduced. Unfortunately, nothing seems to bring back the luck with the ladies that I had in high school, not even old spice body wash and old spice antiperspirant. Much to my SO's delight, I'm sure.
posted by wierdo at 1:00 PM on July 14, 2010


oh, great. I just typed up a huge post on this and now it's a double. great. at least I saw this before sending it out.

anyway, the ads are the work of Eric Kallman and Craig Allen at Wieden+Kennedy Portland, who just won the Grand Prix at Cannes for it. You might know their previous work. They discuss the making of the Old Spice SuperBowl commercial in this youtube video.

They haven't just talkd to reddit people. They have posted north of 300 videos in just the last two days.

My personal highlight is the marriage proposal (successful, real, took just 3 hours for them to get this onto the web), this response to Gizmodo about a loofah, a chat about shilling for other products or this flirtation with a twitter user.

They even talk to obnoxious youtube commenters.

Man, Wieden are good at this shit. I don't like 'em, but I have to admire them. I mean, they got you to post it here.
I have no idea how or why anyone could not love that agency. I'm admittedly in the industry and nobody I know would not love to work with Dan. It's just the coolest and nicest (!) place to work at, though it's hard work to be sure. The guys I know there are happy as nobody's business.
posted by krautland at 2:31 PM on July 14, 2010 [5 favorites]


Do you think any of this is actually going to sell any deodorant?
posted by crunchland at 2:53 PM on July 14, 2010


Fo Sho.
posted by chunking express at 3:05 PM on July 14, 2010


Do you think any of this is actually going to sell any deodorant?

I cannot tell you how many times I have been tempted to purchase either the body wash or the deodorant for Mr. Pad, purely because the commercials are so great.

However, he's used the same deodorant since high school and body-wash-wise, prefers to smell like a girl. I'm afraid to tamper with the system.
posted by padraigin at 3:05 PM on July 14, 2010


Do you think any of this is actually going to sell any deodorant?

The earlier regular-tv campaign sold me some.

I figure, it's all pretty much the same crap doled out of the same 55-gallon drums. So I have a choice between Deodorant Compound 1242C that encourages funny ads, or Deodorant Compound 1242C that encourages regular shitty old ads.

Not a tough choice.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 3:12 PM on July 14, 2010 [4 favorites]


Hah, ROU_Xenophobe, that's a great way to look at it.
posted by wierdo at 3:21 PM on July 14, 2010


A CHALLENGER APPEARS!
hello sparkletone
posted by boo_radley at 4:05 PM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


Yards and yards of man-boobs.
posted by crunchland at 4:23 PM on July 14, 2010


How the Old Spice Videos Are Being Made

If nothing else, can we give them big ups for having voluntarily gone to 4chan to find commenters?
posted by fairytale of los angeles at 4:24 PM on July 14, 2010




After Alyssa Milano's challenge, I'm imagining all those gulf animals being washed with Old Spice.

Seriously, this is officially the best marketing campaign I have ever seen.
posted by qvantamon at 5:31 PM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


I have no idea how or why anyone could not love that agency.

Trust me-- live in Portland for long enough as a non-Wieden employee and you learn how easy it is not to love many (not all) of the folks who work there.

They may be smart, talented, funny, creative people, but many of them appear to believe that they are god's gift to the high art of advertising, and are not shy about letting everyone know it.
posted by dersins at 5:32 PM on July 14, 2010


How these videos are made.
posted by ColdChef at 6:00 PM on July 14, 2010


The Old Spice campaign proves that we'll eventually get to the point where instead of being fed up with a meme in a mere couple of days, we'll be sick of it before it even happens.
posted by crunchland at 6:32 PM on July 14, 2010


So in like a month the Mainstream media will be talking all about it is that what you are saying?
posted by The Whelk at 6:36 PM on July 14, 2010


Old Spice Voicemail Generator.

This thread is now diamonds.
posted by ColdChef at 6:37 PM on July 14, 2010


He made a video for his child. This is my favorite ever.
posted by desjardins at 6:43 PM on July 14, 2010 [6 favorites]


Someone should get them to make a "Happy 11th Birthday MetaFilter" video.
posted by ColdChef at 6:50 PM on July 14, 2010


there are enough twitter accounts, we can MAKE them do it.
posted by The Whelk at 6:52 PM on July 14, 2010


why'd i just close the window like I was looking at porn?
posted by desjardins at 7:00 PM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


This one asking about what university he attended is my favorite.
posted by garlic at 8:37 PM on July 14, 2010


I would like the Old Spice Guy and Bruce Campbell perform a Duran Duran song together on the piano.
posted by Dreamcast at 9:23 PM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


The Old Spice campaign proves that we'll eventually get to the point where instead of being fed up with a meme in a mere couple of days, we'll be sick of it before it even happens.

That's the royal WE, right?
posted by chunking express at 9:26 PM on July 14, 2010


What I love about this is that it's a digital wrapper for something much older.

Go to a street market, pass a hawker like the late Joe 'Peeler Guy' Ades, or hit a fairground, and you'll see the same dynamic: the crowd gathers, there's a pitch, a few people get picked out (volunteers or stooges) for special attention, perhaps a bit of banter with hecklers. That's how selling has been done since selling was first done, but it's receded in the developed world to the point where people go as tourists to watch fish-flingers in Seattle or haggle over rugs in a Moroccan souk.

As ColdChef's link suggests, it's rare for a corporate client to entrust an agency with that much freedom to improvise within the boundaries of the brand and campaign. W+K can talk about it social media experts and tech aggregation, but it's really built on the old-school sales pitch.

(FWIW, the classic Old Spice still gets the nod from the scent mavens at Basenotes, because it's a genuinely complex oriental made for the mass market.)
posted by holgate at 11:45 PM on July 14, 2010


Do you think any of this is actually going to sell any deodorant?
it's not supposed to. it's flirting. it's supposed to get your attention, to let you know they are there and let you make an assumption as to who they are. the real hard sell happens at the supermarket. it's where you convince yourself that your assumptions are right.

but yeah, it'll move the needle.

but many of them appear to believe that they are god's gift to the high art of advertising, and are not shy about letting everyone know it.
oh, guilty as charged. but you get people like that at all agencies. I used to be like that before I realized I was doing it.
posted by krautland at 1:38 AM on July 15, 2010


Monocle smile!
posted by homunculus at 8:53 AM on July 15, 2010




on Twitter, minutes ago:

isaiahmustafa: Powell's... I don't ever want to leave.

Aww, yeah.
posted by mwhybark at 5:49 PM on July 15, 2010


Note in the farewell the last thing he does is catch a fish. So long, etc.
posted by mwhybark at 5:52 PM on July 15, 2010


Exotic car throwing competitions? Throwing exotic cars or throwing cars in an exotic way?

So many questions.
posted by The Whelk at 5:55 PM on July 15, 2010


I apparently am incapable of watching these without whistling the little jingle at the end.

I mean, when I'm not clapping with glee like a seal.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 8:29 PM on July 15, 2010 [2 favorites]


Now we can look forward to the bevy of lousy imitators this whole advertainment campaign is undoubtedly going to spawn.
posted by crunchland at 3:39 AM on July 16, 2010






Alas, The Old Spice Guy Didn't Actually Help Old Spice. Here's Why.

Jezebel's random confirmation bias conclusions based on one data point.
posted by jessamyn at 12:07 PM on July 20, 2010


Yeah. As much as I hope this ad campaign fails -- mostly to avoid mediocre imitators -- I think it's probably too soon to tell what sort of an impact the campaign had. People don't necessarily buy deodorant and soap until they run out. I know I've probably been years working on the same mennen speed-stick.
posted by crunchland at 12:36 PM on July 20, 2010


I wonder what percentage of the web is straight up link bait.
posted by chunking express at 1:09 PM on July 20, 2010


I know I've probably been years working on the same mennen speed-stick.

ur doin it wrong
posted by dersins at 11:52 PM on July 20, 2010




Make up your mind homunculus!

NPR interview of Isaiah Mustafa. (Libraries get a mention).

I sent Mustafa a letter and asked for an autographed scratch-n-sniff photo. I doubt I'll get a reply.
posted by cjorgensen at 6:13 PM on July 23, 2010


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