Staff Reporters
Sep 3, 2010

Top 10 Viral Ads

What makes a viral video a viral success? We've ask industry experts how the following ten viral ads manages to rake in millions of views online and earn a well deserved place in the viral hall of fame.

Top 10 Viral Ads

Lets get stuck in with the most talked about viral video this year created by Wieden + Kennedy for Old Spice. Thanks to a smooth talking man with a six pack and a clever script, the 'Smell like a man, man’ video has generated 19,080,756 views to date on the Old Spice YouTube channel.

Connie Lo, ECD at Leo Burnett Hong Kong, comments, “The Old Spice manly man is a fully fleshed out character, and the scriptwriting really reflects this. The humour manages to walk that most difficult of tightropes that separates cheesy from funny.”

Another Wieden + Kennedy success story, Nike’s World Cup ad ‘Write the future’ enters the list with 20,533,745 views. Why? In addition to impressive computer graphics, football legends Wayne Rooney, Cristiano Ronaldo and Fabio Cannavaro are only a few of the super celebrities starring in this video. The dollars are definitely well spent on this three-minute long video.

Alistair Wood, ECD of Cheil Worldwide Seoul, said, “So the casting was cursed, and it’s so last season now, but give me hocus pocus over the vuvuzela any day: it’s still the best show in town.”

Before Nike and Old Spice stole the viral scene, there was Evian’s ‘Live young’ also known as the Roller babies video. With 27,371,875 views to date, this video created by BETC Euro RSCG quickly moved from YouTube to the small screen due to its popularity online.

Nils Anderson, CCO Beijing and regional head of art for Asia at Y&R, tries to image how this video came to be, "Creative: 'We’ve got bunch of babies, too young to walk, dancing on rollerskates. It’s still about health, and it’s going to be really funny in a freaky way.' Creative director: 'Nice. Go make it'”

Since its launch last year, T-Mobile flashmob has gathered speed and currently boasts with 22,495,518 views. Saatchi & Saatchi gathered 350 dancers to create this ad that has no doubt seen hunderds of people poring over its scenes to try and spot a familiar face.

Saharath Sawadatikom, ECD at MRM Worldwide Bangkok, said, “People are getting used to the video recording trying-to-be a viral story, but this time is different. Live candid camera, a real story, positive entertainment and involving a lot of people - the combination creates a stunning effect.”

11,582,317 views goes to Unilever’s ‘Dove evolution’. Ogilvy & Mather reveals the truth behind the seemingly naturally beautiful and flawless models we see in advertisements. Dove changes perceptions with an ad that goes a long way in boosting self-esteem among women.

Sydney Samodio, ECD at DraftFCB Philippines, reviews the ad, "It's a brave move for a brand to take something that an entire industry has been saying since, well, forever... and do the exact opposite. That's probably why this spot still resonates, and like the model in the video, they started with a plain, simple truth, and, using skill and technology, transformed it into a beautiful piece of communication."

In order to try and break through the overcrowded LED TV market, Samsung puts The Viral Factory on an impossible mission to try and herd sheep with LED lights. The resulting 12,613,948 views made it all worth it.

Here is JWT Jakarta ECD Ivan Wibowo's take on this, "People are getting tired of seeing ads that are amazing but they know are fake. They want to see something amazing but truthful. This ad succeeds in making you believe its real and honest. Plus everybody loves sheep."

The word ‘banned’ is always going to pique people's curiosity. A red faced kid screaming his head off over candy in a store generates 21,825,047 views for a ZaZoo Condoms ad by agency Duval Guillaume Antwerp. Classic.

Bill Chan, ECD of Ogilvy & Mather Beijing, agrees, "Threats are always an effective advertising tool. In this video, the threat of a screaming child stems from an insight into parenthood. Many viewers will connect with this scene as it's an experience that many come across in their daily lives. And that makes it funny and relatable."

World renowned tennis player Roger Federer rakes in 6,334,088 with his amazing skills for Gillette online.

Jun Asano, co-ECD at McCann Erickson Japan, said, "Athletes are not employed just for their on camera smile, what the audience respects is their extraordinary skill and physical talent. This is an excellent case where the opportunity of an athlete employed for a mass media product ad is optimised via the use of viral media."

Hi-Tec's water resistant shoes pulls in 6,143,556 views in ‘Walk on water’ developed by CCCP Amsterdam. The team invents a liquid mountaineering sport that sees participants push their limits. Whether this is real or not, they certainly deserve respect for exceeding human limits.

Kevin Pereira, ECD at Euro RSCG Singapore, said, "The problem with us 'adfolk' commenting on these things, is we're all too aware that there's probably some brand behind this viral stuff. It was a touch too polished for me, and felt a bit too commercial. But I enjoyed watching it. The response from my non-advertising mates however, was 'awesome' and 'check this out' and they of course passed it around digitally."

User-generated video 'House rules' submitted for Doritos' annual crowd-sourcing ‘Crash the Super Bowl’ campaign has all the right ingredients for a successful viral video. A sexy lady, a man high on testosterone, delicious food and a smart kid together manages to record 5,968,418 views in total.

Andy McKeon, founder and ECD at Bulldozer Inc Australia, has the final say, "Situation we can all readily identify with, check. Ass shot, check. Cute kid takes down a playa, check. Memorable line, bingo."

*The figures reflect views on YouTube only.

Related Articles

Just Published

3 hours ago

Yext throws it back to the ‘90s

The integrated marketing campaign spotlights outdated search technology with a side of nostalgia.

4 hours ago

Heineken reignites sporting rivalries ahead of Uefa ...

Campaign created by Le Pub, includes activations during the tournament across Europe, with support from brand ambassador and France legend Thierry Henry.

4 hours ago

Is spam-busting AI tech reducing amount of hate ...

Hate removal has spiked, but overall content deletion is down. Is spam-busting AI tech the answer?

2 days ago

Dentsu organic revenue declines 2.4% in 'encouraging...

Organic revenue fell 0.9% in Japan and 3.5% internationally in the first quarter, but overall underlying profit grew 20.8% as margins improved.