Viral Marketing On The Cheap

Big success on a tiny budget

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Marketers everywhere face problems including mute buttons, ad-blocking software, and steep prices.  Advertising that folks actually like and spread on their own is pretty special, then, and so Barry Schwartz recently discussed Blendtec’s "Will It Blend?" campaign in the context of viral marketing.

RustyBrick‘s Schwartz talked to our own Mike McDonald following a PubCon keynote presentation given by George Wright, Blendtec‘s vice president of marketing and sales.  During the presentation, Wright fed a rake handle into one of his blenders, and in case you haven’t seen or heard, iPods, iPhones, and all other sorts of things have met similar fates.

Drastic?  Perhaps.  But in the beginning, it was also cheap – the campaign started with a budget of about 50 bucks.  And as Schwartz said, the Blendtec guys were just asking, "How do I demonstrate to everybody out there that my blender’s actually better than yours?"

The technical details didn’t matter.  "The real thing for him was actually to get the name Blendtec out there, so when somebody thinks ‘blender,’ they’re thinking Blendtec," Schwartz continued.

So bring on the small budgets, and just be sure to add an ample dose of "fun to watch" and "community interaction."  Schwartz made a point of highlighting the views and comments Blendtec’s YouTube videos have received.

All of this has even led to recognition on some corporate levels.  The Food Network, from which Blendtec originally couldn’t get a response, has now reached out to him.  Other companies, after having their products tossed into blenders, are even including the videos in their own campaigns.

As for the financial effects, Blendtec’s sales are up about 700 percent.  Viral marketing is undeniably a powerful thing.

Viral Marketing On The Cheap
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  • http://www.diamondonnet.com/ Diamonds

    Now I wish we were selling blenders.

  • http://www.searchtheentirecraigslist.com Paul

    There are 10 or 20 other websites out there like ours, but by giving ours the added advertising push it needed along with some "thinking outside the box" ideas, the traffic has grown tremendously. Every product in existence can be improved upon,either by an enterprising thought or by advances in technology. Never say that an item,an idea or a service cannot be improved upon. It is simply not true,it just hasn’t been tried yet.


    Thank you for another great article Doug!

  • http://moviebakery.com Klaus Holzapfel

    The "will it blend" campaign was indeed very successful on a minimum budget. But the reality of viral videos is quite different: Many of them look (on purpose) like they are shot on a small budget – but they are not. We often see 6 or even 7 figure budgets. Added to this are enormous marketing efforts to push the videos views (if they are not manipulated in the first place).

    Creating viral videos on a budget and finding a decent audience is hard business and requires: 1. Creative writers, 2. Qualified producers, 3. A customized publishing strategy, 4. Luck

    We have the first 3 down but not always the 4th one;-)

    We have been producing over 150 videos on a budget in the last 18 months. I know what I am talking about.

    You can look us up at moviebakery.com to learn more about how we are doing it.

    Good luck with your own viral efforts!


  • http://www.sixthsensemarketing.com.au/ BD @ Sixth Sense Marketing

    I wonder how little kids have seen these videos and put mum or dads iPhone, iPod in the blender to see what would happen. Maybe this campaign is the underling fact to the high sales in iPhones.

    Great video campaigns.

  • Chris Crum

    There’s never been a better time for viral marketing with the rise of social media and online video still occurring. It’s getting more competitive, but that should really bring out creativity, which in my opinion is only good for the industry.

  • http://www.urbanmedia.co.uk/index.asp seo company

    thankyou for this insight. I think it is important for people to realise the importance of video on their websites. Meticulously reading small portions of text on over cluttered pages is old-hat now… people go straight for the play button!

  • http://directory.car2be.com/ Thomas Anderson

    The Viral marketing method, historically, has been responsible for many of the best marketing campaigns ever launched.

    Just because people overuse a term doesn

  • http://www.clickroutes.com seo company buckinghamshire

    what will become more apparent is the integrated use of video. mobile phones now provide a platform that means the web and video are becoming more closely integrated than ever.

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