Becoming an instant billionaire? Sounds f***ing great.
Yesterday, Fortune announced that Dollar Shave Club, a startup that ships razors directly to subscribers’ homes each month, sold to Unilever for a whopping $1 billion.
The Dollar Shave Club brand exploded into the public consciousness in 2012, when the company released what can only be described as an exercise in absurdist advertising.
The video ad—which features Dollar Shave Club Founder Mike Dubin, a man in a bear suit, and the f-bomb—has almost 23 million views on YouTube. The success of Dollar Shave Club and their Little-Ad-That-Could confirms what great advertisers have been saying all along: advertising and playing it safe have no business being together.
As David Ogilvy, described by some as the Father of Advertising, famously said: “Don’t bunt. Aim out of the ball park. Aim for the company of immortals.”
Dollar Shave Club certainly hit it out of the park. Dubin, who has a background in improv comedy, explained that he wrote the ad in an attempt to stand out from brands that take themselves too seriously.
He said, “The world is filled with bad commercials and people who are marketing too hard. I think what we wanted to do is not take ourselves too seriously, and deliver an irreverent smart tone.”
This irreverence has certainly inspired copycats. The Dollar Beard Club, which claims to be the manlier alternative to the Dollar Shave Club, piggybacked off of Dubin’s great idea and gained quite a following of their own.
2 million views? Not too shabby.
There is something to be learned from both the Dollar Beard and Dollar Shave Clubs. First, if you see a strategy that works for someone else, try it out: there is a chance it will work for you too. There is no shame in learning from the success of others.
Finally, take risks. Be irreverent. Dust off that old sense of humor and try it on, even if it’s a bit strange and you’re worried it will weird people out.
If you’re feeling exceptionally brave, you could even try to float some puns. It seems to have worked for the Dollar Shave Club.
Each Thursday, the Viddyad team will choose a new commercial to add to our Video Ad Campaign Hall of Fame. If you have any nominees (video advertisements that made you laugh, made you cry, stood the test of time, or made you go “WHOA”) let us know! Comment below or shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Image Source: http://bit.ly/2a29PLr