Can You Teach an Old Dog New (Social Media Marketing) Tricks? Ask Old Spice!

by Celeste Bishop

in Social Media Marketing

My Father used Old Spice. I can still remember the smell wafting out with the steam from his shower when he cracked open the bathroom door. It was, simply… wonderful.

Many years ago (Before Social Media Marketing).

When we asked Dad what that smell was, he said “frou-frous” and encouraged us kids to get some for him for Father’s Day or Christmas.

Of course, I didn’t know it then, but Old Spice had a brand image that most companies would kill for — then or now. Yet Old Spice had languished in the face of new fragrances that were accompanied by hip, megabucks marketing campaigns; their brand seemed dormant. Until two weeks ago.

Old Spice Guy - Social Media Marketing Icon

Old Spice Guy - Social Media Marketing Icon

Old Spice Guy Video

As it turns out, you can indeed teach an Old Dog new tricks if you have the right creative team and willingness to test social media marketing.

Old Spice launched an aggressive social media campaign as a follow-on to their successful Super Bowl commercial featuring Old Spice Guy. In a matter of a few days they cranked out over 180 YouTube videos that have “Gone Viral” (viewers are telling their friends, who tell their friends, etc.). Heck, just go ahead and watch them for the sheer fun of it — they’re really entertaining!

Then, Old Spice Guy engaged in banter in key online communities such as Twitter, Facebook, Reddit and blogs. The “engagement” included celebrities such as Demi Moore, Ellen DeGeneres, Apollo Ohno and Kevin Rose (founder of Digg) that drew in their huge fan base as well.

You now can even get a “customizable” Old Spice Guy voicemail generator created by an enterprising entrepreneur.

What’s the secret to this runaway social media marketing success?

  • Creativity
  • Talent
  • Smarts
  • Chutzpah!

It turns out there’s a lot of sniping online that the campaign was all well and good, but Old Spice (Proctor & Gamble) was rumored to have lost money. Not so. The campaign cost was as near to zero as you can get, their YouTube channel alone has over 11.6 M views at the moment and Old Spice has already seen a 107% increase in sales.

What’s more, Old Spice Guy (Isaiah Mustafa – previously under-employed actor and former NFL football player) has just signed a contract to appear in a movie with Jennifer Aniston, Colin Farrell and Jamie Fox. The creative geniuses behind this social media marketing coup will, no doubt, be able to name their own future as well.


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