In case you’ve been living under a rock, Old Spice has been dominating the attention of the public recently, from their series of Manly Man Old Spice ads, to their recent social media and viral powerhouse success. Everyone is talking about it.
And I had to wonder…did Old Spice employ Neuromarketing to help create this wildly successful campaign? So I did a little digging.
Here’s the Evidence
I couldn’t find any definitive evidence that Old Spice collaborated with any Neuromarketing firms, but here is what I found.
Wieden & Kennedy is the advertising agency behind the Old Spice Manly Man. Wieden & Kennedy was also behind the award winning Coke Superbowl ad. Emsense, a Neuromarketing firm, was also brought in on the Coke ad, both to whittle down from the possible creatives to determine which ad would be aired during the Superbowl, and to fine tune the ad with editing that resulted in an engaging ad start to finish.
Procter & Gamble owns Old Spice, and P&G has been named as one of the big brands regularly employing Neuromarketing. Martin Lindstrom, author of Buyology and Neuromarketing “guru”, has claimed P&G as a client.
So, P&G owns Old Spice and is connected to Neuromarketing and Martin Lindstrom. Wieden & Kennedy is behind the Manly Man campaign and is connected to Coke is connected to Neuromarketing firm Emsense.
When you do the math, probability seems high, doesn’t it?
Regardless – Here’s What They Did Right
- You-Centric – the ads come out of the gate engaging with the audience directly. “Ladies…” Sit up and pay attention ladies, Manly Man is talking to you.
- Targeted to Women – Women dominate purchases in their households, including products for their men. So it makes more than sense to target the sensibilities of women. Manly Man appeals to women not just because he’s attractive, but because he hits on the deeply-wired wishes of women to have a partner who is simultaneously strong (protection and resources for off-spring), and sensitive and attentive (translated – he’ll stick around for the long haul). It’s sexist, I know, and there’s no way this would’ve flown with most women if it weren’t for the humor. The conscious mind of women doesn’t need a man to take care of stuff, she is perfectly capable on her own. And this is absolutely true. However, at the same time, we are wired to seek partners, and the deep primal unconscious has its own wants.
- Storytelling – the brain loves stories, and the Manly Man tells us a story through language, props, and movement.
- Signature Sounds – Each little piece of the story of the ads is accompanied by highly recognizable and emotionally evocative sounds, topped off with the famous and updated Old Spice whistle.
- Cognitive Fluency – Though the ads are fast-paced and a lot happens in a small space of time, it flows and the story is told with both words and visual props making it super easy for the brain to digest and process.
- Alpha Power – Presence of an Alpha appeals to men and women, even though it simultaneously can induce feelings of discomfort and inferiority. That’s why Old Spice nails it by using…
- Humor – The tongue-in-cheek humor of the Manly Man disarms any feelings of discomfort for both men and women, allowing both sexes to comfortably envy and identify with the Alpha male.
- Memorable – The above cocktail of powerful elements means high emotional engagement and attention, increasing the likelihood of the ads, AND the product being committed to memory.
- Personal – As if the ads weren’t already spectacular and personal, Old Spice took it that extra step up the success ladder right into the blue sky of A W E S O M E N E S S by really making the campaign personal through social media and engagement. Through Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube, anybody could leave a comment for or ask a question of Manly Man and maybe get it answered in a personalized YouTube video in near turn-around real time. Genius. Effing genius.
Did I miss anything?