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Blendtec - how to use blender to reach millions of people within days


Blendtec with their viral marketing campaign "Will It Blend?" kickstarted their company, and changed the way people perceive seemingly boring product such as a blender

?Strategy & Tools

Blendtec History Timeline

  • October 2006 – Tom Dickson, the CEO of Blendtec, begins the “Will it blend?” marketing campaign.
  • October 30, 2006 – Dickson's team upload their first video from the “Will it blend?” series.
  • January 12, 2007 – Chain Store Age writes about Tom Dickson's “Will it blend?” marketing campaign.
  • March 30, 2007 – Tom Dickson makes his appearance on Jay Leno's “The Tonight Show”, where he blend… a wooden rake hand!
  • September 2007 – the “Will it blend?” videos score $15,000 revenue from Revver, a video hosting service.
  • In 2008, Tom Dickson stars in two Dreyer's Dib's commercials, and in one of them he's blending some man's hair mixed with wax (after a waxing procedure).
  • October 15, 2008 – Tom Dickson appears in Discovery Channel's “Time Warp” program, where he blends dangerous items with the program's signature slow motion technique.
  • April 5, 2010 – iPad blending, the most popular video on the “Will it blend?” YT channel, is published.
  • March 2014 – the first “Will it blend?” video reaches over 6.4 million views.
  • March 1, 2018 – Blendtec's videos have more than 285 million views in total.
  • November 2018 – Blendtec has more than 180 videos uploaded and their YouTube channel counts nearly 900,000 subscribers.
  • December 2021 – their YouTube channel has 860,000 subscribers, and their iPad blending video from April 5, 2010 has now more than 19 million views.


“Will it blend?” viral marketing campaign – small budget

In October 2006 with a budget of $50, Tom Dickson, the founder, and CEO of Blendtec and his co-workers created a youtube video series called "Will it Blend?". Dickson bought just some boxes of glass marbles, a wooden rake, and other miscellaneous to record his first blending videos. He didn't know then that it would make Blendtec viral.


The “Will it blend?” videos

The main theme of Blendtec viral videos was to show off the prowess of their products by blending various items that you aren’t meant to blend.


Most viewed episodes*:


*Awards "Will it Blend?" received:

  • nominated for the 2007 YouTube award for Best Series,
  • won the Net Magazine's 2007 Viral Video campaign of the year,
  • won the Bronze level Clio Award for Viral Video in 2008.

In the first few episodes, Tom starring in a white lab coat, blended marbles, rake handle, can of Coke, and a Big Mac meal. Within five days, these clips had gone viral with 6 mln views.


Blendtec viral marketing reaches TV and radio

Dickson has made many national television appearances, including:

  • NBC's “The Tonight Show,”
  • Dreyer's Dib commercials,
  • Discovery Channel's “Time Warp,”
  • … and others.

Some radio stations also made a use of Dickson's fame and invited him to their programs.


Blendtec marketing – high quality

Blendtec marketing was successful because Blendtec's blenders rock! The stunts would fail otherwise. The company has an overwhelming number of 5-star ratings on Amazon. It would take a while to find a model of its blenders with a rating under 4-stars. They are also not cheap, but consumers love them!

Although, they weren't so popular before the “Will it blend” campaign.

?Psychology

Storytelling

There’s absolutely nothing interesting about the average blender. Most brands told the same story, "we have the best blades to help you unlock fruits' full potential." Blendtec didn't tell, they showed. They transferred features into benefits.


Curiosity gap

They aroused curiosity: Will it really blend? And as we know, curiosity is infectious.


Humor Effect

They included comedy in the videos. Starting from an abstract theme itself. They blended such items as an iPad, an iPhone, a skeleton, glow sticks, superglue and other items that are not the usual recipients of blenders.

All of those characteristics made those videos "funny", "innovative", and "creative" - traits that consumers typically like to be associated with when they make a buying decision.


Reliability

“Will it blend” viral marketing videos also included slogans like "don’t try this at home" warning, and during the filming, Tom Dickson sometimes said things like "don’t breathe this."

It increased their reliability in the viewers' eyes. They did funny and irrational experiments, but they remained cautious and responsible. Surely, their products must have been just as good!


Bizarreness Effect

We are attracted to strange and unusual things. Nowadays, you have to be “different” to get noticed by larger groups of people.

Blendtec viral videos surely were! What's more bizarre than blending random items with a typical kitchen blender? Today, it's nothing strange to see numerous strange videos like those on YouTube, but back then it was something completely new and out-of-the-box.

? Window of Opportunity

There’s no such thing as a boring product or service! Find a new different perspective and go all the way. Doing something extreme or out-of-the-blender will get you noticed. You can build your brand from it.

For Content Marketing Experts: you can go to Google Ads and run brand awareness campaigns by prioritizing display ad placements. You can do blogging etc. But you can do a creative video and achieve the same and even more. Most people aren’t out there buying a whole collection of blenders. BlendTec is a case study in 38 business books around the world.

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