Who hasn't seen elephants bungee jumping out of UFO's?

by Jonathan Marshall

In addition to last week’s discovery of Handerpants, and in the spirit of reiterating just how effective viral marketing truly is, today’s post is an online video for Samsung from digital marketing company The Viral Factory. Although I found the video on Creativity Online, it has just over 10,000 views on Youtube. And while the video responses are mixed between lovers, haters and morons who get stuck debating whether or not the video is real (common guys- it’s an ad, of course it’s not real)- it gets people talking regardless. That, like I said last week, is the point of Viral marketing, creating a buzz in today’s user-generated content environment.

In the video, Samsung claims to have set up 32 hidden cameras all over London’s Piccadilly Circus to capture a live stunt. After the stage is set, a UFO flies over the heavily-visited London sector, pauses, and two elephants bungee jump out of the bottom of the ship. After dangling for about a second or so, the elephants get pulled back in the UFO, and it darts out of the picture. After the witnesses rushed to capture the ridiculous spectacle on their phones, only one person is able to show off a photo she snapped with her lightning-fast Samsung Jet. And that’s it.

So how well does that work? What do people think about fake stunts staged to look like real ones? Powerade has a great viral video of Lebron James draining 90ft. jump shots from the opposite-end of the basketball court. Although the flight of the ball, timing and actual jump shot of Lebron all look realistic, anyone who has ever played basketball before understands that it takes way more effort to pull off a stunt like that- even for King James. Whether or not Lebron can make those shots is not the point of the ad, Powerade just wants to point out the ridiculous skills and further hype the bball-phenom dubbed “The Chosen One.” That being said it, like many other Nike, Gatorade and sports virals, has well over 1,000,000 views on Youtube. Most would say that is effective, but what do you say?