The need of brands for low-cost viral campaigns that will – to put it in tabloid terms – “ignite the social networks” is as constant as the need to sell more products.
But if one thing is clear to anyone who has tried his hand at advertising in any way, it is that viral can’t be ordered. Unfortunately, viral video is neither a stuffed burger nor a cubic meter of firewood. Viral is something that happens organically only when the cards, stars, mercury retrogrades and dream catchers align, and most importantly: when there’s a good insight and a brave execution of an idea.
All these factors aligned in McCann Belgrade’s latest campaign for Lav beer which recently became an absolute hit the internet. It’s Lav’s series of short comic video sketches for slava (patron saint days) with the brilliant actor Nenad Jezdić.
For many years now Nenad Jezdić is the ambassador of Lav brand and his role in the already legendary ad from 2004, and the famous line “And from the best man … a TV” is probably unknown only to the Amish people in remote hamlets of Pennsylvania.
Now, 12 years later, after a very successful remake of this famous ad, Lav beer faced a challenge: how to best use the last quarter of 2016, with limited budget and in short timeframe, using only digital media, to deal with the season of slavas (patron saint days) in an original and authentic way, which is the biggest nightmare for all creatives.
In talks with the marketing team of Carlsberg, McCann Belgrade agreed that a new approach is needed, that would steer away from the well-known clichés when it comes to this time of year.
The choice fell on a campaign that humorously parodies well-known stereotypical characters that we see at these celebrations. When you add to this idea the acting talent such as Nenad Jezdić, you have all the ingredients for a digital campaign that in a very short period collected over a million hits on Facebook and sparked many debates. From newspaper articles that reviewed religious traditions, to the comments of offended Facebook users immune to humor, McCann Belgrade’s campaign has once again shown that it is better to annoy a handful of internet moralists, and entertain millions, than to play it “safely” and remain undetected.
If you were in a coma over the last seven days, or you simply haven’t used the internet, watch all episodes of the Lav series for patron saint days, which are proof that good ideas and good collaboration between the agency and the client are the only recipe for success.
By: Vladimir Vuković, Copywriter, McCann Beograd