A bizarre event took place at a Boston Starbucks recently. A mystery man walks into a Starbucks, yells out “I’m Rich! I’m Rich!” and throws 100 $1 bills into the air and then walks out calmly. People in line simply stared at the money in awe. The loose cash is reportedly being “donated” to the relief efforts of Japan. I looked at this event and thought to myself… What if this was all planned out? I mean, what if Starbucks actually hired a local firm to stir up publicity in the Boston area? We’ve all heard of these crazy PR stunts.. Coke has one that spreads “Happiness”. Think of it this way.. Starbucks received local TV coverage of the incident, it sparked word-of-mouth buzz, it was blogged about in the blogosphere, and now who doesn’t want to visit a Starbucks to have a chance to win some free cash hurtling towards you while on line!? And it only cost them $100 bucks. I’m just saying… there is a chance.
Archive for March, 2011
The internet is buzzing about Rebecca Black, a 13-year-old singer, and her latest music video “Friday” that she uploaded on Feb 10, 2011. Initially the video only received a couple thousand hits on Youtube (4,000 to be exact). Over the span of a weekend it generate a whooping 6+ Million view. By March 21 2011 it had accumulated 27+ Million, and by the 24th of March it’s on the brink of receiving 43+ Million. So how did this young singer receive more hits than Lady Gaga?
Judging from comments left by
fans viewers, it doesn’t look good at all! (“ya this video sucked”, “is this a FUCKING joke???”, “I thought this was a parody”). Despite all the negative feedback Rebecca Black is the one who has the last laugh. Her single “Friday” was covered by Nick Jonas, She’s campaigning to do a duet with Justin Bieber, and made an appearance on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. Lady Gaga even called Rebecca a genius! The original video also spawned numerous parodies, and has caught the attention of music master Simon Cowell. Could this overnight celebrity keep it all together?
It’s going to be interesting what her next release will be and how she’s going to play it out. However, so far the single has reportedly made her a couple bucks and obviously a Youtube Phenomenon. She’s currently at #29 on iTunes – outperforming tunes by Kanye West, the cast of “Glee” and Rebecca’s idol/crush, Justin Bieber.
UPDATE: In 1 day it surpassed 2+ Million views on Youtube
UPDATE: April 4 2011 82+ Million views on Youtube
A thought just ran through my mind. “Has it been done before?” is usually one of the first set of questions I ask myself. After a few minutes of research I stumbled upon this article which explains how Warner Music Group allowed Youtube’rs to use a portion of their roster’s music videos inside their Youtube videos and receive compensation for it. “We’re giving a framework for any kid in the world to try to make the best Green Day video with one of their songs,” said Alex Zubillaga, executive vice president of digital strategy and business development for Warner. Essentially turning over the power to the people would excite people. However, to me it seems as though this never really took off. Or did it?
Anyways, the idea that ran through my head was similar to this. The power of Youtube is undeniably one of the strongest grass-roots movements we have seen online. Celebrities such as Justin Bieber, Fred, and Michelle Phan have managed to make a living off of their Youtube video accounts. With fame draws attention, and when you have people’s attention brands are willing to endorse you. Since there are hundreds of Youtube celebrities that account for millions of views on Youtube, why wont the record labels use these accounts/opportunities to service their products to stir up publicity? To keep it short and simple, the record labels always want to get paid. If a Youtube celebrity uses the lead single of Bruno Mars as their background music, the label is going to want a certain percentage from the money they make from that video.
I believe the record labels are missing out on an a serious opportunity. Take a look at the ten-year-old Youtube sensation Maria Aragon. She created a cover of the world famous “Born This Way” single from Lady Gaga and uploaded it to her Youtube account. The views accumulated from that specific video have exceeded more than 22 million. After little Ms. Aragon posted her amateur video online, Lady Gaga released her official music video which only managed to gather 17 million in views. Those facts should automatically throw up a red flag. Because of these internet phenomenons occuring on Youtube, I believe there is going to be a stronger force of attention to somehow use these Youtube personalities to endorse or use musical tracks in their uploaded videos.
Build a working relationship around these personalities and allow them to endorse new singles. Yes those 22 million “plays” on Youtube will not be accounted for on the Neilsen Soundscan ratings, but in the long-haul I believe it will have more of a stronger impact then if a radio disk jockey is forced to “play” it on the radio station at a certain time.
Disaster after disaster I see these simple grassroots-marketing schemes that seem to build momentum by working off of people’s emotions. It can be as simple as making people feel guilty for not buying into a tiny $5 sticker that SUPPOSEDLY gets donated to the Red Cross, or by having the masses text “REDCROSS” to 90999. Even Lady Gaga, and Apple iTunes is stepping in for the rescue! From the success of Haiti’s “text to help” campaign, and now this Japan earthquake/tsunami, I’m sure we’ll see more of these mobile donation campaigns. It’s cost-effective, fast, and simple. The only problem I am having with this is that sometimes people simple hit the “Donate” button without fully researching how much of their donation goes to the relief efforts. On top of that, how do you verify if the organization is a scam?
“Sometimes the Stars” is a gorgeous new song from Adelaide band The Audreys, taken from their 2010 album. The accompanying short animated film, produced by Luke Jurevicius and directed by Ari Gibson & Jason Pamment, is about a lost girl’s journey through a surreal landscape, and her yearning to make a connection in this distant yet strangely familiar world.