YouTube Tuesday: Insane, Beautiful Flying Man; Microsoft Takes a Funny Stab at Google; and Sight — a Student Film

It’s YouTube Tuesday again… so here you go. Three product/service videos and three mini marketing/branding critiques.

1. Insane, Beautiful Flying Man sponsored by Go Pro and Five Ten

Before you watch, note the comment from YouTube in the screengrab below : – )

This is just plain beautiful—aided in part by the haunting music. It’s absolutely the new-media web version of “aspirational” advertising. Meaning, you may never (ever!) strap on a winged suit like this dude but you might think (or at least feel) you could/might (hence the term “aspirational). So, to get a wee bit of the feeling you might buy a Go Pro camera or Five Ten (the “Brand of the Brave”) shoes, hat or hoodie. [more after the video]

Several entities are building brand equity (that’s marketing mumbo jumbo for “getting their name out there”) from this video. There’s the flyer himself Alexander Polli. The video has his name on it throughout in the lower right corner–it’s in the form of a YouTube hyperlink. Click on his name and you’ll become a subscriber to Polli’s YouTube channel that uploaded the video. But wait, his channel is part of a YouTube network (a relatively newish-ish phenomenon) called  “network_A” with close to 200,000 subscribers across it’s channels–all, like Polli’s, dedicated to extreme sports. The beauty of a YouTube channel from a channel owner’s perspective is that subscribers are notified of new videos when they come out — by e-mail or other means. That’s powerful for content owners — to have people waiting for your next bit. And the smarter network operators use their power to “cross-promote” content from one channel in their network on others. Some will sell non-network content owners access to this audience base. BTW, “network_A” is actually part of a larger group called Bedrocket which has a bunch of networks. It was founded by one of the co-founders of the Huffington Post, Ken Lerer. I’m not sure how the money flows in this case — Polli is sponsored by GoPro (the extreme camera company) and the video has their logo on it. The video also has a logo for Five Ten. Is money flowing directly to Bedrocket? I don’t know. I do know I love this new world. Thanks to Jeben Berg, former creative director at YouTube for getting me savvy-ish on YouTube networks a couple of years ago during research for a client. And thanks to Erick Brownstein for sharing this particular video.

2. Microsoft

Body slamming ads that just hit away at their target without some comic relief are a dangerous business. They’re used a lot in politics .. but, in business at least, they can backlash badly. So the humor helps a lot. The superviral “I’m a Mac, I’m a PC” ads by Apple were brutal body slammers. But they were funny and cute — so few people really noticed the bruises and thought worse of Apple for being such meanies. Here Microsoft is taking aim at Google Docs–which competes with the Microsoft Office suite and Microsofts cloud office solution. And they are dealt with a deft, funny touch.

3. Sight Systems

This isn’t a real company (thankfully– because it’s beyond creepy!!!) but it would be awesome product video were the company real. So I’m including it. The short film is the graduation project of students at Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design in Jerusalem. And it’s super well done. Check it.

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