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Sarcasm So Works the Best

by Katherine Baker

When you think of a YouTube video that you have watched dozens of times, what do you see? Do you see animals, babies, double rainbows or maybe even men getting kicked in the crotch?

Well, that’s what Smart Water associates with “viral videos,” as seen in its newly released video advertisement featuring Jennifer Aniston.

Jennifer Aniston’s public relations team had her use sarcasm to get a point across about how videos go viral, while promoting Smart Water.

And it worked.

An article on Green Muze stated, “In the latest Smart Water campaign, Aniston’s PR people have created a ‘viral’ video using everything from cute dancing babies to hundreds of puppies to labelling the video a ‘sex tape’ to garner more views/hits and sell more bottled water.”

Jen’s PR people did not want her to just talk about how she loves Smart Water for this particular ad. They wanted to implement viral video tactics by channeling other videos that have already gone viral and add the element of humor. Portraying this ad as a “sex tape” was a funny and somewhat brilliant move for Smart Water. I laughed out loud when I saw what the video really was about.

Sarcasm and irony incorporated with celebrity endorsement works for PR.

As noted in Hannah McDaniel’s blog post, “Pauly D. does not approve this message,” celebrity opinions make for humorous, yet effective, ads.

Using non-traditional elements with celebrity personalities is going “viral” in the PR and marketing industries, just like these particular videos.

So PR professionals, hop on the sarcasm bandwagon when considering your next campaign.. or don’t. Because imitating other funny videos in your own video is so not funny.


  1. Post comment

    I definitely think that other companies could use this strategy for success. However, I do not think it would be effective past the second or third viral video. You are right–people will start ignoring them. On the other hand, I think the public will look forward to a second video from Smart Water!

  2. Post comment

    First off, I want to say that I really enjoyed this article because I hadn’t heard about the video yet. I found this blog post through PR OpenMic.

    I think Smart Water did a great job with this video. I think it was truly a stroke of genius.

    I was wondering if you thought another company could use similar tactics to have much of the same success. Is the first parody of viral videos as effective as the second, third, and thirty-fourth? I think people will catch on and start ignoring them. Then again, viral videos have similar trends, but videos go viral every hour.


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