I've long held up BlendTec as a shining example of viral video advertising done right. With their "Will It Blend" series of videos—where their industrial-strength blenders create dust from things like golf balls, iPhones, or glow sticks—they've entertained millions while simultaneously showing off the actual quality and strength of their unique product.
I've seen plenty of great videos from brands, obviously, but usually they're just going for pure entertainment and brand recognition, at least in the viral video world. Either that or they go too far the other direction and talk so much about their product or service that they bore the audience and forget to share anything fun or enjoyable. It's a rare piece of viral video content that can both demonstrate a product and entertain viewers on a level that leads them to share it with friends. That's why BlendTec has always stood alone in my eyes.
Until today. Now there's a new company following the BlendTec mold of product demos that are also insanely entertaining and share-able. It's called EZ Grill, and it's quite literally taking the Will It Blend approach to viral marketing, which is: destroy popular gadgets using your core product. Check it out:
Already nearing a million views in only three days, the video is clearly viral material. People enjoy seeing iPhones burn almost as much as they like seeing them blend, it seems. Viral viewers love seeing destruction. Add in the element of a "contest" of sorts, to see which brand of phone fizzles out first over an open flame, and you've got even more fun for the audience.
But the thing I want to point out—the most important thing for aspiring video marketers to grasp from this example – is this: The EZ Grill product is showcased. We see the grill lit—quite easily and with little hassle—and we know it burns hot enough to melt a smartphone screen. Without putting an infomercial on TV to drone on at viewers, these guys have managed to showcase their product's power and ease of use… all as a background to their viral hook of a phone-grilling competition.
Product demonstrations are fantastic ways to use video to drive sales. But don't just pull the product out and demonstrate it. Get creative. Have fun. Experiment. Tie it into a current event or hot topic… include a gadget everyone's talking about… and if all else fails, destroy something.