Motrin Moms Viral Video

Okay so if you haven’t heard, (and if you are on social networking sites…chances are you have) there was a HUGE uproar about the online video by Motrin about “wearing your baby”. Which, to be frank, was a lame online video campaign to begin with. The problem was the video made the mistake of pissing off one of the most vocal communities online – Mom’s using social networking. This also happens to be the demographic the video was targeted at.

Just to be clear – I’m not siding with Motrin. Nor am I dissing the social networking juggernaut that is the collective community of Mother’s online. The video itself wasn’t anything breathtaking and may have been marginally condescending – I’ll give it that much. You can watch it below to form your own opinion:

Pretty dumb, right? Let’s be honest. The phrase “It totally makes me look like an official mom”…come on. I doubt there is a mom out there that wears her baby in a Bjorn carrier because all the other cool mom’s are doing it.

But all this blogging and Twitter conversation, with a very small amount being negative, is getting people talking about Motrin. What their ad campaign did was create a truly great viral marketing video. People are talking about their campaign although there are a small group who are angry about it, the vast amount of comments I read on Twitter just called it dumb or criticized Motrin for generally not connecting with their demographic. There were many complimenting it too. Think about it…when was the last time you had a conversation about a pain reliever or an ad campaign by one?

Here’s where Motrin really fell on their face with this campaign. Their first reaction when this small amount of negative feedback started trickling in? They pulled the site down that was hosting the video. That’s right…so the video finally generated some buzz about their product after it had been up for over a month with barely a blip on the radar and then they pulled the site down after a little negative feedback launched the video virally rather than trying to immediately put out the fire on their website with this group of social networking Moms who were offended or people who may just be curious about the video and to see what all the hub-bub was about. Brilliant.

Now that you already know you screwed up, why not engage the demographic you insulted and open up conversation? Don’t run and hide…engage.

Now that they’ve acknowledged they made a mistake, what they really need to do is launch a social media rescue campaign. Start checking Google alerts and comment on as many of the Mommy blogs as possible, start a Facebook group to allow public discussion and get feedback on their solutions, connect with Moms on Twitter and come up with an offer especially targeted to those offended by the ad. While they’re at it, they should start a blog themselves and speak from the heart about what they were thinking.

So what’s the moral to this story? What Motrin should have done originally was to hire a team of Mom’s using social networking to get their opinion of what they would find funny and what would appeal to them. Listening is rule #1 of social networking and Motrin tried to skip that step. If you’re going to speak on behalf of any group of people, you should listen to what they have to say first.

HubSpot Blog Post: Viral Doesn't Have to be an Infection

Back in August 2008, I was invited to write a short post which was published on HubSpot’s Inbound Internet Marketing Blog. Here’s a short snippet of the article with a link to the full post on the HubSpot Blog:

5 Tips To Creating An Effective
Viral Video Marketing Campaign

Viral marketing sounds like something you may be stuck in bed with for a few days maybe with a stuffy nose, and a fever…but it doesn’t have to be. Did you know that every minute over 10 HOURS of video are uploaded to YouTube. Think about it…10 HOURS…while you were just thinking about this…another 10 hours just got uploaded to YouTube! So how do you make your viral marketing video stand out? How do you get it passed on to others without you asking (hence the going “viral”)?

Here are 5 tips to keep in mind when creating a viral marketing campaign for your online video: >>> continue reading >>>

How Twitter Can Save The World

Or how the power of conversation can help you out in a bind

Okay so Twitter probably can’t save the world, but on one occasion I was involved with it saved one person’s afternoon. I often hear that “Twitter seems like a huge waste of time” from people who don’t get it or aren’t trying to get it. Here’s my argument why that is completely not the case.

Twitter can be as simple as following an interesting conversation between a few people, providing a link to a great article or video or maybe just some witty banter between friends. A great example of an engaging conversation on Twitter is posted by Adam Cohen (or @adamcohen on Twitter) on his blog called Twitter: The Value of Good Conversation where he takes a snapshot of a conversation between Scott Monty (@ScottMonty) and Christopher Penn (@cspenn) of a look at a big corporation’s struggles in the current economy. I didn’t see the original conversation between Scott and Christopher (although I do follow both of them) – but I found the link to the blog post by Adam on Twitter and really wanted to include it in this blog post as a great example of the quality dialogue on Twitter. I’ll admit reading this post made me want to finish my own blog post I’ve been talking about writing since it happened back in August.

The flip side to an interesting dialogue on Twitter is occasionally just getting stuck in a situation and throwing a question out to the world in the hopes that one of your followers in the Twitter stream might have an answer. So I was inspired to pull a thread of conversation out of Twitter I had with Alex Howard (@digiphile) to illustrate this point:

@digiphile: Where’s a good bikeshop near Boylston Street in Back Bay? Blew a tube hopping over a cobblestone curb. No spare. Whoops
August 28th 5:35PM

@eric_guerin: @digiphile I think the closest bike shop to where you are at is Back Bay Bicycles on Comm Ave
August 28th 5:38PM

@digiphile: @eric_guerin & @skalik Thanks! That might still leave time to get a tube, switch it & return to Cambridge & shower. Twitterific replies.
August 28th 5:40 PM

@eric_guerin: @digiphile Been there…almost the same spot too! Good luck & safe ride home!
August 28th 5:43 PM

@digiphile: FTW: | These guys were awesome. Highly recommended. Self-service tube change, 10min. Loaned me a tool, too. A+
August 28th 6:51 PM

So within the span of 10 minutes Alex was able to find a bike shop less than a block away and get his bike back up and running. All because he asked his followers on Twitter. I used to work less than a block away on the Newbury Street side and frequently used to stop in to Back Bay Bicycles so I was very familiar with the bike shop and their great service. I’ve also been in Alex’ situation with a flat tire and had a LONG walk because I had no way of asking for help on a network like Twitter. By the way Sandy Kalik (@skalik), another of Alex’s followers also answered within those first 10 minutes to help him out.

This is my own experience of how I actually helped someone out of a bind by listening to the ongoing conversation on Twitter. On an everyday basis I get help and ideas from my Twitter followers for simpler things like figuring out a WordPress Plugin. I also give assistance, opinions and ideas where I think I can help people when they ask but this was an example of a time-sensitive situation I was able to help someone else out with.

How about your own experiences? Please consider sharing them either below, on Adam’s post or pingback with a post on your own blog.

Discussing Social Media with…Eric Guerin

I had the pleasant opportunity to be interviewed for a blog post by Danny Brown, the owner of Press Release PR, providing search engine optimized press releases and SEO-friendly content for the Web 2.0 world, and a vocal advocate of social media PR. Below is a snippet from his blog post with a link to the full interview on his blog. Enjoy!

Discussing Social Media with…Eric Guerin

A little while back, I sent out a request via Twitter asking if anyone would be interested in being interviewed for a discussion on social media. With the medium meaning so many different things to so many people, as well as how it can be used, I was interested to hear the views of the people I connect with.

>>> continue reading >>>