Matt Golding of Team Rubber on how Bodyform responded to a Facebook comment by unleashing a viral video sensation in just 8 days.
At Rubber Republic our passion is making highly shareable content. We love to make things that are fun, enjoyable, and get people talking, and because of this we have the privilege of working with bolder and more adventurous clients. However, Bodyform were pretty exceptional, and their desire spawned for us a brilliant and fun job.
The Wednesday before last we got a call in the morning from Carat, Bodyform's media agency. A very savvy team there sent us a link to Richard Neill's brilliant post on their Facebook wall (which despite some of the cynicism online, is totally genuine) and explained that they and Bodyform wanted to respond. They clearly loved the post, but wanted to have some fun with Richard in the way they got back to him. They wanted to do something playful.
Straight away, I and two colleagues started bouncing around ways they could respond. Lots of them were funny but when we came to review them 20 minutes later we realised it was very easy to either not answer Richard’s “question” (by making a joke that wasn't a direct response) or to drift into misogyny.
After an hour we settled on two approaches which avoided these pitfalls, and which we turned into scripts. One was slightly safer (and addressed men) and the other was a first draft of the script you've seen. We fired them off on email and went and had some lunch.
The brilliant and brave Marketing Manager at Bodyform surprised us in two ways. Firstly she responded very quickly. And secondly she picked the sharper of the two scripts as her favourite. From that point on things started to move very fast.
On Thursday three of us at Rubber Republic wrote drafts taking on different bits of feedback. Friday I hired a writer to combine the three and add his own magic dust while I cast the film and our producer frantically called together a crew for a Saturday shoot in Carat's Regents Park offices.
The whole team were on the shoot (Bodyform, Carat and Rubber Republic’s crew) and we agreed a final shooting script round a table, which I then shot with the crew, and the excellent actress Charlotte Palmer.
I cut the film on Sunday in my conservatory and sent it to the client that night.
There were minor revisions (we had safer and bolder versions of every line), but in the end we agreed a cut which used the best bits of everything and released it on Tuesday lunchtime.
So 6 days end to end from our point of view. 8 days from the original post to release.
The film has had 2.8 million views so far (almost a week since release) but the majority came in the first three days. For the first and second 24-hour period it got roughly a million views a day, which is not bad at all.
Our client has (thankfully) been rewarded for their bravery and we hope this might prompt other companies to be a little more playful with their marketing work.
Matt Golding is Creative Director at Team Rubber.
(If you can't see this video in your email, watch it on YouTube here.)
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