The idea of going for a joyride with Jeff Gordon is a dream for some and a nightmare for others. One unsuspecting car salesman took the NASCAR driver for a ‘test drive’ in a Chevrolet Camaro, getting a lot more than he bargained for. A disguised Gordon posed as an unassuming minivan driver who “wasn’t used to that much power” (in reference to the Camaro he was sizing up). After pretending to have difficulty adjusting to the Camaro’s power, Gordon took off at lightning speed, doing handbrake turns, spinning, and generally driving recklessly. The car salesman was clearly afraid for his life, even threatening to “call the cops.”
When it was revealed that Gordon was the driver, the previously angry salesman laughed and asked Gordon if he wanted to “do it again.” The entire stunt was recorded for Pepsi with a “can cam,” a camera that is disguised as a can of Pepsi, and a camera in Gordon’s glasses. Since then, the video has gone viral, with over 7.5 million views in two days.
Going viral is the goal of many marketers, but, more often than not, they fall short of the mark. Viral videos are, more often, recorded by individuals or groups, for no apparent purpose, other than their own amusement.
Pepsi showed marketers how it’s done: make people laugh, and make sure that your product is prominently placed. The car salesman’s reaction to Gordon is one that has kept viewers laughing, but, more importantly, they managed to make viewers laugh without losing sight of their purpose: Gordon’s glasses cam kept the Pepsi can cam as a focal point throughout, so viewers walked away remembering more than just Gordon’s hilarious prank, they also remembered the Pepsi can. Marketers who are trying to harness the Internet’s power with a viral video can certainly learn a lot from the company.
Edited by Brooke Neuman