Monday, 24 June 2013

Bodyform viral changes the game. Period.

Yes – that was a cheap headline, but I couldn’t resist.

Now and again, a company grows real cahones and does something that nobody ever expected. In this case, it was (ironically) the makers of ladies sanitary products, Bodyform.  As a result of thisfacebook comment (Thanks, Richard Neill) Bodyform responded with a smart, dry,beautifully directed video which not only connected with it’s customer base (the smart ones, at any rate), but garnered 4 million hits so far on YouTube. Not too shabby.

My favourite part is when she repeats the word "sorry" at 19 seconds in. Delicate, and brilliant.

Yes – there could have been a backlash (fortunately there’s no global HR department to say it’s in poor taste, or to place a legal disclaimer on it, or to explain the joke).

It might have been a different story with a different actor, writer or director. But it was all pitched perfectly. Which demonstrates the value of choosing a great team to create it. One with a track record in balancing humour, taste and messaging.  Thank you, Rubber Republic.

Humour is really establishing itself as a way to get tricky issues across without patronising the audience. And more companies are using it internally too – but that’s moving more slowly because of (HR) departmental paranoia.

And I love that fact that this is a British project. I am a huge Americaphile.  75% of our work is in the US, so this viral does us no harm at all. And there are excellent American companies making brilliant comedy for businesses.  So - Would THIS have worked with an American actor / writer / director?  Let me know what you think might have been different.

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