People on Facebook are going crazy over a video of an “elderly” man lifting massively heavy weights at meathead haven Muscle Beach in Southern California. The three-and-a-half minute video has collected 54 million views since being posted Tuesday, with half of the viewership occurring within the first 24 hours.
It’s also an ad.
The video stars Kenneth Leverich, a CrossFit Games competitor, playing a “Candid Camera”-like prank by lifting impossible loads in front astounded bodybuilders. Thrillist created the branded video — called “That moment when your grandpa shows up and puts Muscle Beach regulars to shame” — for hard cider brand Smith and Forge as part of its “Hard Won” campaign, a six-part content series on Thrillist’s website.
Thrillist’s fledgling video team, which was established less than a year ago, wanted to create a video following Smith and Forge’s “old school fun mentality.” They set out to create a piece of content they themselves would want to watch and share online. The ad, created in-house, took a month from concept to execution. And the team was astounded by its popularity.
Thrillist posted the ad to Facebook first on Tuesday afternoon, where it quickly steamrolled into massive numbers and briefly even placing at the top of Facebook’s Trending Topics section. From there, publishers like the Daily Dot, BroBible, UPROXX and Elite Daily reposted the video.
Jody Rones, Thrillist’s svp of advertising and sales solutions, told Digiday that he admits the video took both “luck and skill” — Thrillist didn’t pay to promote the ad on Faceb00k — and credits lessons it has learned in creating previous videos.
“We followed best practices we learned: Being engaging in the very first few seconds and including captions,” he said. “With our branded content, it’s not an ad per se, but we look at branded content that is so great and enjoyable that you’re thankful to that brand for creating great content.”
While commenters are praising the video (“This is one of the best videos ever,” one person said), it’s Smith and Forge that truly has something to be pleased about
Digiday+ Research: Instagram wins over Facebook for role in brands’ holiday marketing
Brands differ on how they use each marketing channel during the holidays -- even when it comes to sibling social media platforms Facebook and Instagram, Digiday+ Research found.
How — and why — Candy Crush is in the midst of a 10th anniversary brand refresh
In the years since Activision Blizzard acquired the Swedish game studio King in 2016, employees at the gaming giant have started to internally refer to their company as “ABK” — that is, Activision Blizzard King. But the corporation’s recent financial reports indicate that “KAB” might be a more accurate abbreviation.
Independent agency Goat invests in influencer strategy for clients as it expands in the U.S.
Everyone is after influencers to up their marketing game. But the secret to success, Goat contends, is in viewing influencers as performance media and using data to deliver clients guaranteed outcomes.
SponsoredHow brands are measuring incremental performance on CTV
Connected TV is unique among other advertising channels because it combines linear television’s storytelling capabilities with digital marketing’s targeting and measurement. As more marketers leverage CTV advertisements to reach relevant and engaged audiences, they also want to understand the real value they are generating with their investment. Incrementality reporting and measurement allow advertisers to measure […]
Marketers bring Web3 to the FIFA World Cup with augmented reality, NFTs and virtual worlds
The month-long tournament, which begins this weekend, will be the first World Cup since it took place in Russia in 2018 long before “Web3” entered the global lexicon. Now, official and non-official sponsors are hoping to harness the hype with a range of NFTs, virtual worlds, augmented reality tools and other trendy tech.
U-Haul diversifies its social strategy to tell people it’s more than moving trucks
In recent years, U-Haul's in-house agency has been working to "better leverage social media for brand loyalty."