Forget porn. Try a kiss. And go for it.

We live in a world of extremes. Bigger is better, faster is greater, more is needed and extremes pay off. Filmmaker Lars Von Trier pushed Charlotte Gainsbourg and some other actresses over the limits of porn-acting in his recent movie Aphrodisiac. Push red to add drama won international awards for over the top (inter) action.

Fashion models are starved, paint brushed, photo shopped and altered. Rap singers become gold chain swinging Lamborghini driving caricatures of themselves.

In an endless quest to please, lips are blown up with silicon, wrinkles ironed out with Botox, fat gets hovered out, breasts molded into gravity defying shapes. The poor youngsters that get confronted with internet porn (I’ve been told that can occasionally happen ;-)) get nervous seeing how double muscled supersized males with the stamina of a steam train go on for the better part of 120 minutes.  Not good for the self-image.

That’s why I was so taken aback by the instant internet hit of amateur filmmaker Tatia Pilieva. She captured, in crude black and white, a magic moment: the first kiss between two human beings.  It’s heartwarming to see how total strangers, adult and assertive people turn into hesitating youngsters in the blink of an eye. The nerve wrecking tension, the nervous laughter, and the I-do-not-know-what-to-do-with my hands: it’s all there.

The tension is so tender, so spontaneous, it’s almost erotic.

And then: the cold shower: all this is a set-up, a sophisticated lie. Most of the participants are actors or models in a clever try to boost the clothing sales for Wren Studio.

But the magic happened. Tons of students, housewives, journalists, bloggers, even the Playboy bunnies have posted their own versions of the first kiss. A multitude of first kisses are kept for eternity. Watching them will put countless tender smiles on lots of faces.

There might be hope, after all ;-).

To Viral or not to Viral… is not even a question (bis)

It happens way too often, and it gives me the flying Trombones: in a meeting room without daylight somebody with great corporate hair will put on a strategic face and will utter something along the lines of “for this bleeding edge campaign, we need a viral component to generate word of mouth that will bla bla bla”.  Here in #canneslions there are even Lions for best viral campaigns. *sigh*

Let’s agree something.  Please, here from the beaches of Cannes: You cannot buy viral. You cannot make viral. You should not sell viral. Full. Stop. Viral is something that will eventually happen, if the online public decides to. There is no magic formula, no guaranteed ways of making it happen. It is –by definition- purely an organic thing. Whether marketers and spin doctors like it or not: going viral is a community driven phenomenon. Seed all you want!

Buying a gazillion online views and paying for countless banners does not guarantee a campaign to be/become viral. It guarantees views, eyeballs, and opportunities to see. Nothing wrong with that: that is what the job is about. Getting the message to the audience. Simple.

The online world has no need for more viral. The online world has a need for more quality, more skill, and more community understanding. As Redford says: more compelling stories. Instead of burning all this useless energy and money in trying to fake something viral, I’d rather see the effort invested in state of the art insights and metrics, strategic choices that drive change, awesome engagement strategies and a flawless execution and delivery plan with respect for the organic nature of the social web.

We’re professionals, not artists.  I prefer awesome to viral any day. One day you might get lucky and experience one of your brainchildren go viral. Good for you. I hope your other online work is awesome enough to move the needle without a viral throw of the dice…..

Keep your eyes on the road, and your hands on… eh…

Finnish Bluetooth peripheral company Iqua has an extremely nice Bluetooth headset, the Smartbadge. If you spend way too much time at tradeshows, it is good to have a decent badge holder (God, do I HATE commercial lanyards!). Iqua provides one that doubles as a headset. Battery goes on forever.

Found a viral movie featuring the Smartbadge. It is –of course- politically incorrect. J


A bridge too far…

I do love viral marketing. Visual messages on the web can be great fun. To make, or to watch. Very often, viral actions make me smile, or grin. But just sometimes they are way way over. See what I mean?  😉

Viral does not work. Tell everyone you know…


A two minute tongue-in-cheek tutorial on viral movies. It sounds easy, no?  😉

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