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Nike Hits Gold with Tiger Woods Commercial

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Nike’s (s nke) new Tiger Woods commercial is going viral in a massive way, according to new stats from Visible Measures. The clip, which features Tiger looking into the camera while his father’s voice states the wish to “find out what (his) thinking was,” received more than 2.7 million views on YouTube in about a week on Nike’s official YouTube channel. Visible Measures also counted more than 160 reposts, mashups and parodies, accumulating a total of 7.1 million views and more than 15,000 comments.

One of the big drivers of the video’s virality seems to be social media. The ad has been making waves on Twitter since late last week, according to data provided by Trendrr. Woods obviously got a bit of a buzz out of his participation at the Masters, but both he and Nike got a big boost out of the commercial as well. Nike was mentioned in about 8,000 tweets per day before the release of the commercial. The day after it came out, that number jumped to 24,846.

One interesting aspect of the ad is that the parodies, mashups and video commentaries have actually become more popular than the spot produced by Nike itself. More than 100 of the 160 clips Visible Measures was able to track down on YouTube are derivatives, many of which simply replace Earl Wood’s voice with a different audio track. These parodies actually became more popular than the original clip over the weekend, and are still growing strong, whereas the Nike ad itself has lost some steam.

Visible Measures’ Matt Florentino believes that this wasn’t an accident on Nike’s part. From his blog post:

“Could Nike have known that no matter what kind of ad they developed, it would be relentlessly parodied? Could this have been their plan all along (given that the ad seems so easy to spoof)? After all, it’s a single shot on Tiger with a voice-over –- it doesn’t take much to record 30 seconds of audio and drop it on top of the ad. It keeps the conversation on Tiger and, in turn, Nike.”

I think he’s onto something here. This ad was a little bit like the online video version of a R&B single that includes both the a capella version and an instrumental track. Give people something that’s easy to remix, and they’re more than happy to take you up on it.

Related content on GigaOM Pro: Social Advertising Models Go Back to the Future (subscription required)

12 Responses to “Nike Hits Gold with Tiger Woods Commercial”

    • I didn’t obsessively watch cable news or the tabloid shows, so until you brought up the phrase “dirty sanchez,” I hadn’t heard it mentioned in regards to Woods.

      So, taking your advice, I looked it up right now. The #1 hit on Google for “dirty sanchez” and “tiger woods” is..YOUR COMMENT ON NEWTEEVEE! A quick stroll down the list of other sites mentioned the two terms gives you,,… basically, not sites a responsible parent would let his or her 12 year-old visit.

      While you’re at Google, click on the NEWS results for the same two phrases. One hit: US Weekly. So perhaps you have a valid beef with the US Weekly editors.

      Now you tell me: from what source did your 12 year-old hear that phrase?

      • FWIW, ISTR the term mentioned by TS was part of the stream of texts Tiger sent to the mistress who posted the website with all the text messages he sent her (but not the ones she sent to him.)

  1. He’s a “disgusting pervert loser” because he had sex with a bunch of women? How many people wouldn’t do that if they were rich and famous? Besides, it’s not like he’s the first (or last) to use money and power to let his hidden desires run free. I say it’s time to leave the guy alone. He screwed up (mostly because he got caught), and he’s moving on. Case closed.

  2. “One of the big drivers of the video’s virality seems to be social media.”

    Be careful how you infer cause and effect. Just because people on Twitter were talking about it doesn’t mean that Twitter was “driving” anything – no more than Twitter had been “driving” the earthquake in Haiti, despite a similar surge in tweets.

  3. Tilted Sideways

    My son was such a Tiger fan until he heard all the salacious details and started googling terms like “dirty Sanchez.” I wish someone would ask Mr. Woods what we parents should say to our children in such a situation? Now my son doesn’t want to play golf anymore. He thinks Tiger is a disgusting pervert loser. Who am I to disagree?

    • To say that, I have to think it’s a bit ridiculous. Does your son like the Beatles? How about rap music? Or R & B? Any of these seem littered with infidelity, drug and alcohol abuse. What about television? Does your son watch television? Oh wait, that’s right. Tiger is the pervert. Be a parent, talk with your child, use it as a teachable moment. But for crying out loud, don’t blame Tiger for everything wrong in your child’s life.

    • A better parent than titlted sideways

      Quit using Tiger Woods as an excuse for your inability to be a good parent. The child should use parents as a role model FIRST, not a sports figure, or anyone else for that matter. Since you apparently cannot adequately explain the situation to the child, it shows your inability to be an effective communicator…