I, like many others, really enjoyed the fake interview released recently by the comedic company Funny or Die between President Barack Obama and Zach Galifianakis. The interview occurred on the web series "Between Two Ferns" and featured a compelling battle between the dry humor of President Barack Obama and the humorous questions of Zach, widely known as Alan from the popular movie trilogy The Hangover.
Click here to view the interview.
I have heard various opinions on the interview including those who questioned President Obama's appearance on the segment. However, what really catches my attention is the creative use of influencer marketing that was used to help promote the Healthcare.gov platform which has a deadline of March 31st, 2014.
Could President Obama have recruited Zach to post a YouTube video asking people to sign up to Healthcare.gov? Or a nationally televised commercial?
Nonetheless, in today's day and age the general public at large cannot be won over by just a paid message from a beloved celebrity figure. Those days are over. That is no longer a guarantee alone to capture our attention. We get the game. We know you are trying to sell your brand to us so if you are going to do so and effectively spark conversation about your brand you have to be provocative.
Make us laugh. Make us cry. Make us think. Convey your brand in a manner that can evoke genuine feelings and best believe that people will not only talk about your brand but there is also a better chance of people actually buying what you are selling. In this case, President Obama is clearly on a mission to increase signups to Healthcare.gov.
The success of this interview won't be determined for a while but according to White House Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett on CBS This Morning, Healthcare.gov's traffic has increased 40 percent since the launch of the video. I believe this type of creative influencer marketing is only going to become more of a trend. I wouldn't be shocked to see more brands and campaigns that utilize for example funny Vine influencers to help with promotions.
Personally, after watching the video the first thing I did was text a friend asking if he had seen it and exchanged texts with lines we thought were funny.
"How does this work, do you send ambassador Rodman to North Korea on your behalf?"
"I have to know what is it like to be the last black president."
And after exchanging those texts? I went straight to Healthcare.gov to finish signing up.
Follow Kofi Frimpong on Twitter: www.twitter.com/therealkofi